Mapping the Potential of Community Forest Resource Rights in Central India

Sharachchandra Lele, Shruti Mokashi 

Mongabay | October 11, 2021

The provisions of the Forest Rights Act 2006 (FRA) relating to Community Forest Resource (CFR) rights have the potential to transform forest governance in India by decentralising forest management power to gram sabhas. However, their implementation has not been effective. ATREE researchers used Census data, maps, and Geographic Information System (GIS) techniques, to estimate the potential area that could come under CFR rights and the locations of villages with this CFR potential in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, and Maharashtra. The study found that across these states, around 60,000 villages could potentially claim CFR rights under the FRA over an area of at least ~1,83,000 km2, and potentially benefit about 6.26 crore people. The views expressed in this commentary are that of the authors.