Darjeeling dist: 79 hamlets to turn into revenue villages

darjeeling: The state government has decided to convert forest villages into revenue villages in the Darjeeling district, as per a gazette notification.

During her visit to Kurseong in October, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had assured that the matter would be taken up at the earliest.

The notification published on November 2 states 79 forest villages of the Darjeeling Hills will be converted into revenue villages 'to implement the rights of settlement of Scheduled Tribes and other traditional forest dwellers.'

The 79 forest villages, include 4 in the Mirik police station; 23 under the Kurseong police station; 9 under Sukhia Pokhari; 26 under Jore Bungalow; 7 under Lhodama; 1 under Darjeeling; 6 under Rungli Rungliot; 2 under Bagdogra and 1 under Naxalbari.

Prior to this, 64 forest villages of the Kalimpong district had been converted to revenue villages in 2020.

In an administrative meeting for the Darjeeling and Kalimpong districts held in Kurseong on October 27 and chaired by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, leaders of hill political parties had raised the demand for speedy conversion of forest villages into revenue villages so that it paves the way for handing out land documents to forest villagers.

"This indicates the state government is sincere towards resolving problems faced by the Hills. We should work with the state for the development of the Hills," stated Anit Thapa, president, Bharatiya Gorkha Prajatantrik Morcha. "We request the State Government to include 6 left out forest villages of Kalimpong and 19 of Darjeeling districts in the conversion process also at the earliest," stated Lila Kumar Gurung of Himalayan Forest Villagers organisation.

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