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Campaign for forest rights

Ranchi, Oct. 29: The National Forum of Forest People and Forest Workers would launch a statewide campaign to return the forest ownership rights to tribal dwellers.

The forum is organising its second national conference here from October 31 to November 3 at Morabadi grounds.

The conference will be held with the theme, “resist commodification of forests and support community forest governance”.

The first national-level conference was held in Nagpur, Maharashtra, in 2002.

Social activist Medha Patkar and Kerala tribal leader C.K. Janu would attend the conference. Members from countries like Spain, UK, Germany, Pakistan, Indonesia, Bangladesh and Denmark will also participate at the conclave.

The public meeting and the rally are being organised under the joint banner of the National Forum of Forest People and Forest Workers and Jharkhand Jangal Bachao Andolan.

While apprising the mediapersons here today conference convener Sanjay Basu Mullick said the theme to be discussed at the conference would be community control over forests, the privatisation of Indian forests, environmental politics and livelihood and the future of forest communities — challenges before the youth.

It is expected that around 20,000 people, mainly forest dwellers from across the country, will be participating in the rally. Besides the members of the forum, other delegates will also deliberate on the struggles and experiences, success, failures and evolve strategies on November 1 and 2 while the annual convention of the Jharkhand Jangal Bachao Andolan will be held on November 3.

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