Maharajganj: In a bid to bring the forest-dwelling Vantangiya community into the mainstream, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath today declared their 18 settlements as revenue villages and accused the opposition of "befooling the poor and the deprived" for long.
UP CM Declares 18 Vantangiya Settlements As Revenue Villages
The Vantangiya community comprises people brought from Myanmar during the colonial rule to plant trees for afforestation.
Adityanath, who, soon after taking over the reins of power in the state, had directed the officials to initiate steps for bringing members of the community to the mainstream, took part in an event in Barhava Chandanchafi village where he also distributed land patta to 3,779 Vantangiya families.
"From today the task of extending the benefits of the government schemes to the Vantangiyas has started," he said, adding that besides roads, water and power, health facilities, education and houses will also be provided to the poor.
"Those who have been speaking about being in politics for the benefit of the poor and villagers have been befooling the people all along... the BJP is the only party which can work for the development of the poor and villages," the chief minister said.
He also laid the foundation stones for Anganwadi centres in these villages where there is also a proposal to set up primary schools, junior high schools, houses under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, toilets, ration shops, solar panels and extending pension benefits to the widows and the aged. "It is the priority of the state government to ensure development of villages which remained deprived of basic amenities since Independence," Adityanath said.
Earlier in Gorakhpur, he said, "The state government is committed to providing basic facilities to the Vantangiyas.
Since Independence, members of Vantangiya community have been deprived of their rights." "Once the villages dominated by them are declared as revenue villages, they will gradually integrate with the mainstream of the society," the chief minister told reporters here before leaving for neighbouring Maharajganj district.
A revenue village is a small administrative region with defined borders. One revenue village may contain many hamlets.
A village administrative officer is the head officer of a revenue village.
The chief minister said that in the second phase, 47 Vantangiya-dominated settlements will get the status of revenue villages, taking the number of such villages to 65. "As many as 1,625 villages will also be declared as revenue villages," he said.
The community faces problems related to the use of natural forest produce like fruits, honey, wax, wood and leaves to meet their daily needs as the forests inhabited by them are not considered as revenue villages.
Conversion of tribal-dominated forest villages to revenue villages under the provisions of the Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act will enable the administration to adopt development measures such as setting up of schools, dispensaries, and other facilities in these villages.
Adityanath also interacted with people at Gorakhnath temple and was briefed by officials about preparations regarding Makar Sankranti celebrations, Khichdi Mela and Gorakhpur Mahotsav which will be held from January 11 to January 13. PTI