GTA Forest Dwellers To Get Land Rights Papers

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Darjeeling: The Bengal government has decided to grant land rights to forest dwellers in the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) area, moving to enforce a law finalised four years ago.

“In the first phase, we will hand over land documents to 168 forest villagers in Darjeeling and Kalimpong district” stated Binay Tamang, Chairman, Board of Administrators, GTA.Tamang was addressing media persons after a meeting between the GTA and state government officials at Lal Kothi, the GTA Secretariat in Darjeeling on Friday.

The meeting was attended by district administration including the District Magistrates of Darjeeling and Kalimpong, Land and land Reforms officials; Forest Department and GTA officials. “The meeting discussed in depth the process of handing over land right documents to forest villagers,” stated Tamang. Incidentally, Forest Rights Act came into force in the country in 2006. Despite being implemented in different districts of the State, it is yet to be implemented in the GTA area.