Undemocratic and arbitrary: control, regulation and expropriation of India’s forest and common lands

This paper by Shankar Gopalakrishnan analyses case studies from different states and shows how governments & industries are subverting rights of the people to acquire common land and calls for accountable system to regulate land use.

Control over land and natural resources has recently become a subject of heated debate in India, and is, today, one of the central fault lines of Indian politics. A compendium of case studies on takeover of common lands in India was prepared for the Society for Promotion of Wasteland Development (SPWD) in order to attempt to fill the gap in the available literature on the subject of land takeover in the country. It represents one of the first attempts to look at this issue at the national level, drawing together local situations and experiences into an overall legal and policy framework. This paper seeks both to present a synthesis of the findings of these studies, reflecting the overall situation at the national level, as well as to discuss possible policy actions that can be undertaken.

See Also

Feature: Land unrest set to increase.

Feature: The new votaries of Forest Rights Act.

Bill: The Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation And Resettlement Bill, 2011.

Act: The Forest Rights Act, 2006.

Report: State of Forest Report 2011.

Report: State of Forest Report 2009.

Report: Summary report on implementation of the Forest Rights Act.

Report: A national report on community forest rights under Forest Rights Act.