Stop deforestation and restore community lands

by Krishi Avam Paristhitiki Vikas Sansthan (KRAPAVIS)
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Stop deforestation and restore community lands
Rural Women Planting Trees on their Devbani land
Rural Women Planting Trees on their Devbani land

As monsoon starts in early July this year, the people, particularly women of Buntoli village in Alwar district of Rajasthan (India), have started planting trees on their‘Chandi Maiya Devbani’ grazing land. The women plant different kind of trees which are useful to them; to improving and enlarging the tree-sheltered area for their livestock and wildlife; to improving the fodder supply for the livestock and to improving water catchment in that area. Apart from these it revives the indigenous biodiversity through plantation of indigenous plant species to enhance ecosystem health in the buffer zone of Sariska Tiger Reserve (STR). Today, the buffer area of STR is invaded by IAS (invasive plant species) such as Prosopis juliflora, Cassia tora and Lantana camara leading to loss of traditional grazing lands of agro-pastoral community and the indigenous flora and fauna is also threatened due to these IAS of plants. The tree plantation helps towards livelihood security of the local people, where poverty and vulnerability to climatic changes (drought, famine) is common. and above all it helps in sinking carbon. “Hamari Chandi Maiya Devbani me ham Sabhi prakar ke ped-podhe uga rahe hai (In our‘Chandi Maiya Devbani’, grazing land, we are plating all kinds of trees); Shailendramuni, a 60 years old community monk from Buntoli village, District Alwar Rajasthan.

Community monk who look after the Devbani
Community monk who look after the Devbani

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Pastoralist women preparing tree Nursery
Pastoralist women preparing tree Nursery

For increasing fodder and grazing availability, 10 women from the pastoralist community in Bakhtpura village engaged in raising nursery for reforestation of Orans (grazing lands). A hands-on training program was conducted for the women by KRAPAVIS project. In the training, emphasis was given on criteria of selecting trees species is that encourage such trees that could provide more than one benefit to the communities (multi purpose trees e.g. fodder and fuel) i.e. 4E driven benefit - Economics, Employment, Energy and Ecology. “I now earn Rs. 400-500 every day through working on Nursery”, says Smt. Sauna, 65 yrs old pastoralist woman. Experiences from this village have been complied under an essay ‘From Stewards to Trespassers: Pastoralist Management of Forest Resources’ published in a book “Indigenous Perspectives on Pastoralism, Policy and the Environment”, The White Horse Press. The essay challenge common ecological approaches to understanding social change amongst pastoralist groups by focusing on the politics of resource distribution and control.

Pastoralist woman also care  livestock & water
Pastoralist woman also care livestock & water

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Bhagwana Gujjar_ a grazier with goats herd
Bhagwana Gujjar_ a grazier with goats herd

“KRAPAVIS, a local CSO based in Alwar, which has played a role in mobilizing the pastoralists of the region, have been in the forefront of highlighting the relevance of Orans as the gene pool of Rajasthan on one hand and their intimate relationship with the local communities on the other”, writes Dr. Sunil Dubey, Member in five IUCN World Commissions, in his recent research report ‘Deliberate Deprivation of Forest Resource Rights and Forced Eviction of Indigenous Communities’.

KRAPAVIS project attempts to bring forth the perceptions and bio-cultural practices of forest dwelling and grazier communities in the Alwar district of the Indian State of Rajasthan. The project explores the perception of the communities about their relationship with forest resources, their traditional practices with respect to resource governance and major challenges relating to livelihood and land tenure. A series of participatory workshops, interactive sessions and interviews with the communities, organised by KRAPAVIS, with the help of a law agency Natural Justice.   In addition to regular interactions, we used participatory tools like community territory mapping and community resource mapping.

The participatory activities and interactions were with various communities namely, Gujjar, Jatavs, Meena, Jogi and other stakeholders. These communities were mainly from the villages of Bakhatpura, Bera, Kalikhol, Nathusar, Loj, Binak, Lilunda and others. Bhagwana Gujjar, a 70 years old pastoralist from Binak village says, “Hame en prakiryao se anpa charai jugal va pani sanrakshit karne me bahut bada labh hua” (these exercises helped us a lot for conservation of our grazing forest land and water).

Graziers have rich culture_worshiping Oran deity
Graziers have rich culture_worshiping Oran deity

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Pastoralists & other stakeholders in the Workshop
Pastoralists & other stakeholders in the Workshop

Over 100 stakeholders; representatives of pastoralists (including Orans dwelling communities), farmers, civil societies/ NGOs, researchers, cultural institutions, and district level government officers of the line departments, came together on the 22nd September 2016. The objective of the workshop was mainly to discuss the specifics of what has been proposed in the state under the Green-Ag Project, and to get buy-in and inputs from key stakeholders. In the Desert National Park (DNP) India, the project will seek to achieve enhanced conservation outcomes i.e. stop deforestation/desertification and restore grazing lands, also enhancing the wider production landscape around the DNP for improved livelihoods. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (“FAO”) has supported the workshop, under the project “Green-Ag Project: Transforming Indian agriculture for global environmental benefits and the conservation of the critical biodiversity and forest landscapes”. The workshop was facilitated by KRAPAVIS (Krishi Avam Paristhitiki Vikas Sansthan), venue at Krishi Vignyan Kendra (KVK) Jaisalmar, Rajasthan, India.

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Community members planting trees
Community members planting trees

Under the project, from establishing tree nursery, to undertaking planting trees, setting up a seed bank, water harvesting, setting up village institutions for better management, building and maintain ponds and many other similar activities, are implementing. The project ensures community participation in these conservation efforts. Many local species of fruit trees and medicinal plants have also been reintroduced in the area and people have been encouraged to ensure the upkeep of the same; this will help preserve the biodiversity of the area. Communities recognise this land as a source of water, food, fodder, fuel and medicines.

Hamara Garuba ji Gaucher mei ab sab kuch hara-bhara; jisme chara, pani, janwar glaya (In our Grubaji grazing land, we now have plenty wood –wildlife and water); Santi Devi , a 65 year old woman pastoralist from Vijaypura village, District Alwar Rajasthan.

On 19 June 2016, Aditi Sodhani from the Global Giving Team visited the project sites and her views about the project “It was great to visit your project sites and learn so much about what amazing work KRAPAVIS is doing---.“

Pastoralists managed to stop deforestation
Pastoralists managed to stop deforestation

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Organization Information

Krishi Avam Paristhitiki Vikas Sansthan (KRAPAVIS)

Location: Alwar, Rajasthan - India
Website:
Krishi Avam Paristhitiki Vikas Sansthan (KRAPAVIS)
Aman  Singh
Project Leader:
Aman Singh
Project Leader
Alwar, Rajasthan India

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