New Delhi [India], April 8 (ANI): Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda has written to chief ministers of 15 states to advise the state nodal agencies to undertake procurement of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) at Minimum Support Price (MSP) in the right earnest.
In the letter, he said that the current situation brought about due to the outbreak of COVID-19 has posed an unprecedented challenge across the country.
The minister said that various states were affected by it to varying degrees and the poor and marginalised including tribal communities were the most vulnerable in this situation.
He said it was peak season for collecting Non-timber Forest Produce (NTFP) or MFP and certain pro-active measures should be taken to ensure the well-being of tribal communities and their economy by providing them safety and ensuring their livelihoods.
Munda said the movement of middlemen from urban areas to tribal habitations should be prevented to check any spread of coronavirus among the tribal communities.
According to an official release, the ministry is also contemplating awareness on social distancing among the tribal communities through Van Dhan self-help groups.
The letter has been sent to chief ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Manipur, Nagaland, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Odisha, Chhatisgarh and Jharkhand. (ANI)