Bills to Include PVTGs of Odisha, A.P. in Scheduled Tribe Lists

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Bills to Include PVTGs of Odisha, A.P. in Scheduled Tribe Lists Blog Image

What’s in today’s article?

  • Why in News?
  • About the Bills
  • Other Additions and Changes
  • Who are the PVTGs?
  • Recent Government Efforts for the Welfare of the PVTGs

Why in News?

  • Rajya Sabha passed the Constitution (STs) Order Amendment Bill 2024 and the Constitution (SCs and STs) Order Amendment Bill 2024, presented by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs.
  • This cleared the way for the addition of several new communities to the STs list of Odisha and the inclusion of synonyms and phonetic variations of existing tribes in the ST lists of both Andhra Pradesh and Odisha.

About the Bills

  • Among the additions were notably seven Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs) (a subset of STs) - four in Odisha and three in Andhra Pradesh.
    • The independent names of these PVTGs had been specifically added as synonyms or sub-tribes of communities already on the ST lists of these States.
  • In Odisha, the PVTG communities added are -
    • Pauri Bhuyan and Paudi Bhuyan as synonyms of the Bhuyan tribe;
    • The Chuktia Bhunjia as a synonym of the Bhunjia tribe;
    • The Bondo as a sub-tribe of the Bondo Poraja tribe; and
    • The Mankidia as a synonym for the Mankirdia tribe.
  • In Andhra Pradesh, the PVTG communities included Bondo Porja and Khond Porja as synonyms of the Porja tribe and the Konda Savaras as a synonym for the Savaras tribe.
  • These groups belong to PVTGs and have been included in the scheduled list after 75 years of independence.

Other Additions and Changes

  • In addition to this, the Bill to amend Odisha’s ST list also shifted two entries - Tamadia and Tamudia - from the Scheduled Castes list to the Scheduled Tribes list.
  • The Bill also added synonyms, phonetic variations and sub-tribes of at least eight existing communities in the State’s ST list.
  • Further, Odisha’s ST list was expanded by adding two communities to it as new entries. These are -
    • The Muka Dora community (and synonyms) in undivided Koraput District which includes Koraput, Nowrangapur, Rayagada and Malkangiri districts; and
    • The Konda Reddy (and synonyms) community.

Who are the PVTGs?

  • According to the Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA), India has 75 PVTGs, who are characterised by -
    • Pre-agriculture level of technology,
    • Stagnant or declining population,
    • Extremely low literacy, and
    • Subsistence level of economy.
  • PVTGs were recognised as a separate category based on the findings of the 1961 Dhebar Commission.
  • In 1975, there were 52 PVTGs and the list had been expanded to 75 across 18 states and Union Territories.
  • Data from the MoTA and the 2011 Census shows that Odisha has the largest population of PVTGs at 8.66 lakh, followed by MP at 6.09 lakh and Andhra Pradesh (including Telangana) at 5.39 lakh.
  • The total PVTG population is more than 40 lakh and the largest PVTG is Odisha’s Saura community, numbering 5.35 lakh.

Recent Government Efforts for the Welfare of the PVTGs

  • The Union Budget 2023-24 announced the launch of the PM PVTG Development Mission
    • This will saturate PVTG households and habitations with basic facilities such as safe housing, clean drinking water and sanitation, improved access to education, health and nutrition, etc. 
    • An amount of Rs.15,000 crore will be made available to implement the Mission in the next three years under the Development Action Plan for the Scheduled Tribes (DAPST).
  • The PM-JANMAN (Pradhan Mantri Janjati Adivasi Nyaya Maha Abhiyan) has been launched to enhance the socio-economic conditions of PVTGs.
    • The Union Cabinet during November 2023 approved PM JANMAN with total outlay of Rs.24,104 crore (Central Share: Rs.15,336 crore and State Share: Rs.8,768 crore) to be implemented during FY 2023-24 to 2025-26.
    • The PM-JANMAN (comprising Central Sector and Centrally Sponsored Schemes) to focus on 11 critical interventions through 9 Ministries.
  • The government has been consistently following up with respective State governments over the declining populations of several PVTG communities across the country.

Q.1. What is the Scheme for Development of Primitive Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs)?

The Scheme for Development of PVTGs was launched in 2008 to adopt a holistic approach to the socio-economic development of PVTGs and gives state governments flexibility in planning initiatives.

Q.2. What is the Tribal Sub-Plan (TSP)?

TSP is a planning concept used in India to channelise the flow of benefits from the Central government for the development of tribal populations in the states. The concept was introduced in the Fifth Five Year Plan (1974-1979) and areas included in the TSP are blocks or tehsils with 50% or more tribal population.

Source: Rajya Sabha passes Bills to include Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups of Odisha, A.P. in ST lists | ToI