May 12: The Minister of Tribal Affairs, Shri Arjun Munda held a video conference with States/UTs on “Tribal livelihoods and safety” in New Delhi today. Chief Ministers, Deputy Chief Ministers, State Ministers for Tribal Affairs and state ministers for Forests from more than 20 states/UTs attended the meeting along with senior State officials.
Addressing the participants, Shri Arjun Munda congratulated the States for supporting the tribal livelihood by stepping up the procurement of Minor Forest Produce at the revised MSP.
Since 1st May 2020, when the MSP for MFP was revised for 50 items, procurement to the tune of Rs 40 crores has been made by 17 States to the tune of Rs. 40 crore. Five more states will begin the process of procurement very soon. Shri Arjun Munda said that MFP has emerged as a prominent means of livelihood for the tribal population and the government is making all efforts to ensure that the tribals get true value for their products. He urged the remaining States also to start the procurement of MSP quickly in the right earnest.
The Minister for Tribal Affairs, Shri Arjun Munda also reviewed the working of Prime Minister’s Vandhan Yojana in the States. He said that value addition is required to connect tribal produce to the Global market which is a long-term vision of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. The Vandhan Kendras and the infrastructure facilities required for value addition and marketing of tribal produce are being supported in States by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs and any other requirements of the states in this regard will be fulfilled, he added. He also highlighted the need to develop a Market chain to take the rural products of Organic nature to National and International markets.
Shri Arjun Munda reviewed the arrangements being made by States for the tribal migrants and students who are returning home in the wake of the situation created by COVID-19.
The Minister said that the push given to the Minor Forest Produce along with value addition and marketing through VDVKs as well as fair support price will prove to be a boon to generate additional livelihoods for the migrants who are returning home at this critical juncture.