Poverty is not merely absence of money or assets, but most fundamentally, poverty is a consequence of the inability of capitalise whatever asset people may have, because of lack of formal title, and the high transaction cost.

Recognition and protection of property rights lie at the foundation of a free society. Property rights allows the development of market economy. With the spread of ownership of assets, people develop a stake in their community, and become active citizens. At the early stages of socio-economic development, land is the principal form of property.

For over a century, millions of Indians, largely indigenous tribes and others living in forest areas, have not had their land rights recognised by the state. A new law in 2006, acknowledges this historical injustice, and seeks to recognise the land rights of these remote and poor communities.

ARCH Vahini, a grassroots NGO based in Gujarat, and Liberty Institute, a think tank based in New Delhi, are working together to help these remote communities document and map their land claims.

Learn More

What is the problem?

Even after being granted the right to own the land they had farmed when the Forest Rights Act was passed into law, the majority of the villagers’ claims have been rejected. Out of 180,000 claims filed in rural Gujarat, only 50,000 were approved.

What we're doing

In addition to spreading awareness of their rights, we help tribal communities prepare and substantiate claims for their traditional land, using simple hand-held GPS instruments to survey their holdings, and map these onto satellite imagery. Done properly about 90% of the claims are approved.

How you can help!

Funding is needed to buy more GPS instruments, upgrade to a GIS web platform, and to enable us to reach out and train more communities. Each activity has a long-term effect: the GPS instruments are used village after village, the web platform accumulates a growing volume of villagers’ data, and training community leaders in one area enables them to go on to train others in surrounding village.

 

 

Recent Events

Opportunity for a researcher on environmental issues

Research Assistant / Research Associate Apply before June 17, 2015 Liberty Institute is seeking a suitable person to undertake research and analysis on issues related to environment, forest and wildlife. A key focus will be on the nature and types of conflict between...

Opportunity for a Research Fellow

Apply before June 17, 2015 Liberty Institute is seeking a suitable person to undertake research and analysis on legal aspects related to land and property rights. The Institute wants to undertake a couple of research projects, to be completed by the end of 2015, as...

Opportunity for a project manager or a project coordinator

Liberty Institute A non-profit organisation based in New Delhi, is seeking an appropriate person for the position of Project Manager or Project Coordinator for the Right to Property initiative. Deadline May 15, 2015. Liberty Institute is an independent think tank...
Patnagarh Property Rights Workshop

Patnagarh Property Rights Workshop

Property Rights Workshop Implementing the Forest Rights Act 2006  15-16 April 2014 Patnagarh, Balangir dist. Orissa Organised by: Zindabad Sangathan, Balangir & Liberty Institution, New Delhi in partnership with Friedrich Naumann Foundation  Tentative Agenda...
Dediapada taluk Field Visits

Dediapada taluk Field Visits

Property Rights Workshop Assessing the Implementation, Institutions and Impact of Forest Rights  Field Visits to Villages in Dediapada taluk in Gujarat 28-29 March 2014 Organised by: ARCH, Gujarat and Liberty Institute, New Delhi, in partnership with the Friedrich...
Sheopur Forest Rights Act Training Workshop February, 2014

Sheopur Forest Rights Act Training Workshop February, 2014

Forest Rights Act Training Workshop Organised by the Collectorate, District Sheopur, Madhya Pradesh In collaboration with the Right to Property initiative of Liberty Institute (New Delhi), and ARCH Vahini (Gujarat) 15th to 17th February 2014 The objectives of the...
Jharsuguda Training Workshop

Jharsuguda Training Workshop

Forest Rights Act Training Workshop Organised by Lokmukti Sangathan, Jharsuguda, ARCH Vahini, Gujarat & Liberty Institute, New Delhi In partnership with the Friedrich Naumann Foundation  24th to 25th January 2014 CASA Resources Center, Jharsuguda, Odisha DAY DATE...
Sagai Village Workshop

Sagai Village Workshop

Property Rights Workshop Assessing the implementation of Forest Rights Act Organised by ARCH & Liberty Institute in partnership with Friedrich Naumann Foundation  Venue Sagai Village, Narmada district, Gujarat Date: 12 January 2014 Programme Schedule: 10 am:...
GPS Training Workshop in Ambikapur

GPS Training Workshop in Ambikapur

District Sarguja, Chattisgarh Dec 2-4, 2013 Organised by PACS Summary observations by Ambrish Mehta  and Barun Mitra Participants from about a dozen districts attended the workshop organised by PACS and its partner organisations in Chattisgarh. Over thirty people,...

Latest Articles

TR: BJP threatens agitation on displacement of tribals

The Tripura unit of BJP today said it will resort to agitation against the state’s Left Front government if they tried to evict 12,000 tribals from the Longterai hill range to set up a firing range for the Assam Rifles. “The state government decided to...

KE: Elderly woman murdered, family arrested

According to Adoor police, they arrested Perladka native Kamalakshan (47), his wife Ambika (40) and their son Sharath (20) on the charge of smothering Ammalu Amma, Kamalakshan’s 68-year-old mother on Tuesday night and hanging it from the ceiling of their house...

GA: Property dispute led to man implicated for raping in-laws, child

Panaji: A 30-year-old man who was arrested for allegedly raping his 10-year-old daughter, mother-in-law and mentally-challenged sister-in-law over a period of six months was falsely implicated in a rape case over a property dispute, one of the complainants and wife of...

WB: Rajarhat Software Development Centre Project

IT giant Infosys today expressed concern over the fate of its proposed software development centre at Rajarhat area near here as the West Bengal government is yet to send its SEZ proposal to the Centre. “We have the land at Rajarhat for which we have paid Rs 75...

WB: Salboni Cement Project

Sajjan Jindal’s JSW Group is going to make a fresh attempt to kick off the stalled projects at Salboni in Bengal with the proposal of a cement plant. The $11-billion group has suggested building a 2.5-million-tonne slag-based unit at an investment of Rs 500...

GJ: Dandi Development Project

Tourism Corporation of Gujarat Ltd (TCGL) has incurred “unfruitful” expenditure of Rs 20.43 crore on the Dandi project, since it was not completed in time, the CAG report said. As per the Comptroller and Auditor General report placed before the state...

TN: Rajakkamangalam Thurai Fishing Harbour Project

To protect natural sand dunes and marine turtles nesting habitat, the Union ministry of environment, forest and climate change (MoEF & CC) has cancelled the environmental (CRZ) clearance granted to Rajakkamangalam Thurai Fishing Harbour Private Limited. The...

TN: Porur Junction Flyover Project

Motorists have long been complaining that crossing the Porur junction at the intersection of Mount Poonamallee Road and Arcot Salai during peak hour is a big problem. “It takes 40 minutes to cross the junction during rush hour. Pedestrians are the most affected as...

MH: Mumbai airport slum rehab project back on track

The Mumbai airport slum rehabilitation project is back on track, with state Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis directing officials to expedite the process. The project to resettle over 70,000 families occupying airport land has remained stuck due to opposition and...