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About Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups 

Context:

The Centre has initiated a survey and registration process to identify eligible beneficiaries for the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G) within 75 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs). This effort aims to ensure housing support for marginalized and vulnerable tribal communities under the PMAY-G scheme.

Relevance:

GS II : Government Policies and Interventions

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Scheduled Tribes in India: Characteristics and Government Initiatives
  2. Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group (PVTG): Characteristics and Government Initiatives
  3. Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G)

Scheduled Tribes in India: Characteristics and Government Initiatives

Population Overview:

  • According to the 2011 Census, Scheduled Tribes constitute 104 million individuals, accounting for 8.6% of the total population in India.

Geographic Distribution:

  • Spread across the country, these tribes primarily inhabit forest and hilly regions, showcasing a diverse presence.

Characteristics of Scheduled Tribes:

  • Essential traits include primitive characteristics, geographical isolation, distinct culture, a tendency to avoid interaction with the larger community, and economic backwardness.

Establishment of Ministry of Tribal Affairs:

  • In 1999, the Government of India established the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, separate from the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

Ministry’s Objective:

  • The primary objective is to focus on the integrated socio-economic development of Scheduled Tribes, the most underprivileged section of Indian society.

Three-Pronged Empowerment Strategy:

  • Similar to Scheduled Castes, the empowerment of tribal communities is pursued through a three-pronged strategy:
    • Social empowerment,
    • Economic empowerment,
    • Social justice.

Coordinated Development Approach:

  • The Ministry of Tribal Affairs works towards achieving its goals in a coordinated and planned manner, aiming to uplift the socio-economic status of Scheduled Tribes.

Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Group (PVTG): Characteristics and Government Initiatives

Vulnerability Within Tribal Groups:

  • PVTGs are identified as the more vulnerable segments among tribal communities, facing distinct challenges that require special attention.

Resource Allocation Disparities:

  • As more developed and assertive tribal groups often receive a significant share of tribal development funds, PVTGs face the need for dedicated resources to address their unique developmental requirements.

Declaration and Recommendation:

  • In 1975, the Government of India, based on the recommendation of the Dhebar Commission, declared 52 tribal groups as PVTGs.

Current Status:

  • Presently, there are 75 PVTGs out of the total 705 Scheduled Tribes in India, spread across 18 states and one Union Territory according to the 2011 census.

Characteristics of PVTGs:

  • Population: Stagnant or declining
  • Technology: Predominantly pre-agricultural
  • Literacy Level: Extremely low
  • Economy: Operates at a subsistence level

Government Scheme for PVTGs:

  • The Ministry of Tribal Affairs oversees the ‘Development of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs)’ scheme.
  • This Centrally Sponsored Scheme provides 100% Central assistance to 18 states and the Union Territory of Andaman & Nicobar Islands.

Objective of the Scheme:

  • The scheme aims at comprehensive socio-economic development for PVTGs while preserving their distinct culture and heritage.

Implementation and Projects:

  • State Governments, as part of the scheme, undertake projects tailored to sectors such as education, health, and livelihoods specifically designed for the holistic development of PVTGs.

Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G):

Scheme Objective:

  • The primary aim of PMAY-G is to provide pucca houses with essential amenities.

Target Beneficiaries:

  • The scheme caters to individuals who do not own a house and those residing in kutcha houses or severely damaged houses.

Minimum House Size:

  • Currently, houses under the PMAY-G scheme must have a minimum size of 25 sq. mt. with a hygienic cooking space.

Concerned Ministry:

  • The Ministry of Rural Development is responsible for the implementation of PMAY-G.

Cost Sharing:

  • In plain areas, the cost is shared in a 60:40 ratio between the Central and State governments, providing Rs. 1.20 lakh of assistance per unit.
  • In Himalayan states, north-eastern states, and the UT of Jammu & Kashmir, the ratio is 90:10, with up to Rs. 1.30 lakh of assistance per unit.
  • Union Territories, including Ladakh, receive 100% financing from the Centre.

Beneficiary Identification:

  • Beneficiaries are identified using parameters from the Socio-Economic and Caste Census (SECC) 2011 data, verified by Gram Sabhas.

Additional Benefits:

  • Beneficiaries are entitled to 90/95 person-days of unskilled labor under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
  • Assistance for constructing toilets, up to Rs. 12,000, is provided under Swachh Bharat Mission-Gramin (SBM-G) in collaboration with MGNREGS or other schemes.

Electronic Payments:

  • Payments are made electronically directly to bank accounts or post office accounts linked to Aadhaar.

Achievements:

  • Against the mandated target of constructing 2.95 crore houses under PMAY-G, the Ministry has allocated a target of 2.94 crore houses to States/UTs.
  • States/UTs have sanctioned 2.85 crore houses, with 2.22 crore houses already completed as of March 24, 2023.

-Source: The Hindu


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