Madhya Pradesh: PESA Act Empowers Devlikala Panchayat

Madhya Pradesh: PESA Act Empowers Devlikala Panchayat

The tribal-dominated Devlikala panchayat of Khandwa has witnessed positive changes under the Panchayat (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (PESA Act).

FP News ServiceUpdated: Thursday, December 28, 2023, 11:02 PM IST
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Khandwa (Madhya Pradesh): The tribal-dominated Devlikala panchayat of Khandwa has witnessed positive changes under the Panchayat (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996 (PESA Act). The village, facing issues with a leased pond for fish farming, decided to take control after a year-long evaluation by local committees formed in compliance with the Act.

They discovered the leased pond was being exploited for profit, leading the panchayat to ban further leasing and opt for self-managed fish farming. The committees, active for eight months, have also addressed land encroachment and resolved disputes locally, reducing reliance on external authorities. The implementation of the PESA Act has improved the village atmosphere, with committees working efficiently.

Notably, 50 villagers, after a 15-year wait, received land leases. Beneficiaries like Punaibai Shobharam expressed gratitude for the positive changes, emphasising the Act's impact on widow pensions and land rights.

Despite challenges, including alleged collusion by officials, the PESA Act has empowered Devlikala, ensuring local governance and faster resolution of issues. The village now has 50% women-reserved seats in panchayat elections, marking a significant shift towards inclusive and efficient governance.

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