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PESA Act, 1996 UPSC NOTE

 

  • The PESA Act was enacted in 1996 “to provide for the extension of the provisions of Part IX of the Constitution relating to the Panchayats to the Scheduled Areas”.

  • Part IX, comprising Articles 243-243ZT of the Constitution, contains provisions relating to municipalities and cooperative societies.

Provisions:

  • Under the Act, Scheduled Areas are those referred to in Article 244(1), which says that the provisions of the Fifth Schedule shall apply to the Scheduled Areas and Scheduled Tribes in states other than Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura, and Mizoram.

  • The Fifth Schedule provides for a range of special provisions for these areas.

  • Ten states — Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, and Telangana — have notified Fifth Schedule areas that cover (partially or fully) several districts in each of these states.

Objectives:

  • To ensure self-governance through Gram Sabhas (village assemblies) for people living in the Scheduled Areas.

  • It recognises the right of tribal communities, who are residents of the Scheduled Areas, to govern themselves through their own systems of self-government, and also acknowledges their traditional rights over natural resources.

  • Empowers Gram Sabhas to play a key role in approving development plans and controlling all social sectors.

  • According to the PESA Act, decisions are to be made by the Gram Sabha, and even the Prime Minister cannot override their decisions.

Why in news

  • Arvind Kejriwal, the Chief Minister of Delhi and the national convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party, made promises during a rally in Jagdalpur, Chhattisgarh.

  • He pledged to implement the Panchayat (Extension of the Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (PESA) within one month if his party is voted into power in Chhattisgarh.

  • Kejriwal emphasized the importance of ensuring tribal ownership of resources such as water, forests, and land, as mandated by the PESA law.

  • The Congress Government in Chhattisgarh had notified PESA rules the previous year, but activists argue that these rules weakened several provisions of the Central PESA law.


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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: PESA Act, 1996 UPSC NOTE
PESA Act, 1996 UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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