RIGHTS OF FOREST DWELLERS IN LIGHT OF THE RECENT SUPREME COURT
People living in the Forest are really forest dwellers? Or are they schedule tribes? Are their claims worth full? A three-judge bench of the Supreme court, led by Justice Arun Mishra, directed forced eviction of around two million people from forest area spread across 17 states of India. Forest is a natural resource presented as a gift to the earth, it won’t be fair if we destroy the natural resource just to satisfy residential needs. People living in the forest are not forest dwellers they are merely schedule tribes. As per February 13 Order, which was made available to the public on February 20, the evictions have to be carried out latest by July 27, on which date the Chief Secretaries of the states concerned have to file sworn affidavits before the apex court. The supreme court order eviction of at least 10 lakhs Schedule tribes and traditional forest dwellers after their claims on forest lands were rejected in a case pending for a few years. Is it right to convert forest into residential areas? Will it be beneficial for the upcoming generations? Is it right to be selfish for our own selfish reasons? It’s better to leave the forest as it was presented to us by our mother earth. We, humans, mold everything according to our convenience, let it be situations or anything. People mold forest into residential areas according to their own convenience without thinking that what will be the future impact of their selfish step. Supreme Court has held that state governments are given 150 to 158 days to vacant the forest areas. It’s truly is in the interest of the public. I feel our increasing population should be reduced or abolished so that the Indian residential land should be sufficient for the present and upcoming generations as well so that people don’t use natural resources such as forest for their selfish reasons. There are many other reasons why people chose the forest as their habitat. People migrate to the forest or choose forest as their habitat because of the following selfish reasons; they get all the resources directly, fresh and available to the fullest. They avail organic resources for them and their families. People do not think it as a whole country, they only think as an individual or their family. People are not bothered about the upcoming generations or the area with deficit resources. They are so self-centered that they do not think about society or community or the country as a whole. The increasing population is also one of the reasons for the conversion of forest into residential land. Chittorgarh (Rajasthan); Breaking the law is not something one is usually proud of. But for Devi Lal, a resident of a forest village in southern Rajasthan, a court summons for encroaching on forest land in 2002 is a prized possession. Does Indian really possess the right to violate our environment? Do really humans can destroy our
environment? I don’t feel that it is the part of fundamental rights or basic lifestyle. Is it right to harm the environment for selfish reasons? I feel all the Indians including myself do behave selfishly for their greedy reasons. I feel the decreasing resources and increasing population force people to migrate to forest areas, to satisfy their needs. Humans are born selfish and they can do anything to satisfy their needs, so humans will not hesitate to harm the environment for their greedy reasons. People do not consider the environment as “OUR” they only see the environment from the point of view that it is others and not ours. I feel we should treat the environment and earth as a mother so that we don’t harm our Mother and so that we can preserve the environment for the upcoming generations. If we treat the environment as ours then people will not migrate to forest lands to satisfy their needs and this issue will be resolved. To make the environment as “OURS” there are certain things to be followed. People just cannot rely on the government that they will take efforts or initiative, every individual should also take personal measures so that the habits and selfishness can be changed into selflessness. The most important thing is that people should change their thinking and accept the changes. To change their thinking each individual should start with his/herself. People don’t charge rent in the forest. So it is very convenient to stay there. They can cut out woods for their own selfish purposes. Why are people so selfish and greedy? People should start migrating out of the forest so that the forest is reserved for future generations as well. People are so insensible that they should plant a sapling in every house or it should be framed as a law that every individual or every family should plant a sufficient number of saplings. People think that it is only the responsibility of the government to take care of the environment or the country as well. But actually people are misled that it is the sole responsibility of the government, but it is the sole responsibility of each and every individual. So finally I conclude it by telling one thing “Every individual is responsible for the boon and the bane of the environment. So stop blaming the government and start working on it. It is better to work on instead of blaming the government or ourselves. I feel that the order passed by the supreme court is justified as far as it is all about our environment and reservation of resources for the upcoming generations.Everyone is to be blamed for any boon or bane caused to the environment. People should be evicted soon for the betterment of society and upcoming generations.I feel eviction of schedule tribes from the forest will turn into a very good decision. “Transition is the rule of the world” and it is necessary to make transitions to make the world a better place to live in. Eviction is the best thing to do for upcoming generations from the forest.