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Tribals' land issue to be solved soon: KCR

Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Monday said that a survey of forest lands will be done and the issue regarding "Podu" lands, or those cultivated by tribals for years, will be solved "very soon".

He gave the assurance on World Tribal Day, amid the continuing friction between tribals and Forest Department over Podu lands in various parts of the state.

Tribals alleged that the forest officials are snatching their agriculture lands in the name of forest conservation and afforestation.

KCR, as the Chief Minister is popularly known, in a statement, pointed out that Podu lands are covered by 'Rythu Bandhu', the investment support scheme for farmers, and that his government is implementing a plethora of programmes for the welfare and development of tribals in the state.

Greeting tribals, he described them as the pure people who live as part of the nature and symbols for true affection, love, compassion and other such values, which still exist in the human society.

He said the government is providing education, medical, drinking water and power supply in the tribal habitations, and has also created special medical facilities for them.

He claimed that the government was able to prevent the deaths of tribals due to viral fevers. The government fulfilled the aspirations of the tribals for 'our rule in our Thanda/Gudem'.

"The Tribal Thandas and Gudems were converted into Gram Panchayats to make the tribes part of self-rule. The government had provided them with an opportunity to become Sarpanches and be part of the state administration," he said adding that ST sub-plan is being implemented effectively.

Safe and pure drinking water is supplied through Mission Bhagiratha Programme even to the remote Gond Tribal Gudems. For the education of the tribal boys and girls, the government created exclusive Residential Gurukulas and imparting them with international level education with all the facilities, he said.

An Exclusive IAS Study Circle was formed for tribals and sports colleges too started for them. Tribal houses are given free power upto 101 units and three-phase power is supplied to the tribal habitations.

Noting that exclusive tribal culture is like a thread for the garland of the Indian cultural life, he said that the Komaram Bheem Building is constructed to show case Telangana tribal exclusive culture to the world. The building is coming up in the posh Banjara Hills area in Hyderabad and it is ready for the inauguration. As part of the statues of prominent personalities erected on the Tank Bund, the statue of Komaram Bheem was also erected.

The government also set up museums at several places to protect the tribal culture, he said, adding that the Toopakula Gudem reservoir was renamed the Sarakka Sammakka Barrage.

The government is organising the festivals of Sammakka-Sarakka, Nagoba, Sevalal Maharaj on a large scale, spending several crores, to get them recognition all over the country and the world, he said.

Marketing facilities are being provided to the produces collected by the tribes such as honey under the brand name Giri. Malnourished tribal children are given nutritious food under Giriposhan programme. Special measures are taken under the CM ST Entrepreneurship Scheme to make tribals as entrepreneurs and businessmen, he added.

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