Millennium Post

State notifies constitution of 'West Bengal Lodha-Sabar Development Board'

Kolkata: The state Tribal Development department has released a gazette notification announcing the constitution of 'The West Bengal Lodha-Sabar Development Board with its head office situated in the West Midnapore district. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced the formation of such a board for the development of these tribal communities during her administrative review meeting at West Midnapore and Jhargram held in May.

The aims and objectives of the Board will be to promote, preserve and protect traditional art, folk music, dance and culture and historical, cultural landmarks , objects, structures, festival etc of these tribal communities, to promote education and traditional games among the Lodhas and Sabars and to facilitate technical and vocational training; to sensitize their community members regarding issues of healthcare and nutritional needs of the children and the elderly and community about the ill effects of alchoholism.

The Board will also set up crèches adjacent to ICDS centres to provide nutritional support to children manned by volunteers from the community and collect non timber forest produce, medicinal plants and arrange forward linkages for marketing these products.

The infrastructure and cluster-based development of traditional crafts like babui rope, bamboo etc will be made along with developing market linkages. Promotion of tourism including homestay facilities and all possible measures for promotion of horticulture, sericulture, cattle rearing for improved livelihood will be taken up.

A general body and an Executive body of the Board has been notified.

The general body constitutes 22 members led by Chairperson Balai Chandra Nayek.

It will meet at least twice in a year under normal circumstances.

The executive body has 11 persons and will meet at least four times in a year. Balai Chandra Nayek is the chairman of this Board too.

Ramonita Sabar who has recently scripted history by becoming the first post graduate (PG) from the Kheriya shabar community has been made a member of both the general and executive body.

Ramonita hails from Phuljhor, a remote village in Barabazar, and has secured the highest marks in History among the girls pursuing PG in Sidho Kanho Birsha University.

Sabar is considered to be the most marginalised among the tribal communities.

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