Press Information Bureau
Government of India
Ministry of Tribal Affairs
17 DEC 2018 3:13PM by PIB Delhi
Migration of Tribals

As per the “Report of the Expert Committee on Tribal Health ‘Tribal Health in India’ Bridging the Gap and a Roadmap for the Future”, 104 million tribal people in India are largely concentrated in ten states and in the North-East. Almost 90% of the tribal population of the country lives in rural areas.  There are 90 districts or 809 blocks with more than 50% tribal population and they account for nearly 45% of the Scheduled Tribe (ST) population in the country.  In other words, almost 55% of the tribal population lives outside these 809 tribal majority blocks. 

The above report also states that as per Census, 2011 over two-thirds of the tribal population is working in the primary sector (as against 43% of the non-tribal population), and is heavily dependent on agriculture either as cultivators or as agricultural labourers. The tribals people are increasingly moving from being cultivators to agricultural labourers. A comparison between Census, 2001 and 2011 shows that the proportion of cultivators reduced by more than 10%,  while the proportion of agricultural labourers increased by 9% among the ST population.  It is estimated that, in the last decade, about 3.5 million tribal people have left agriculture and agriculture-related activities to enter the informal labour market. Displacement and enforced migration has also led to an increasing number of Scheduled Tribes working as contract labourers in the construction industry and domestic workers in major cities.  Currently, one of every two tribal households relies on manual labour for survival.

Constitutional provisions under Schedule – V provide safeguards against displacement of tribal population because of land acquisitions etc. The Governor of the State which has Scheduled Areas is empowered to prohibit or restrict transfer of land from tribals and regulate the allotment of land to members of the Scheduled Tribes in such cases.

Government has also enacted several Laws which have specific provisions with regard to               displacement, rehabilitation and resettlement of tribal people.  These include:

  • The Scheduled Tribes and Other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006.
  • Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013.

Further the Ministry of Tribal affairs is implementing inter-alia the following schemes for mitigating migration of tribals and their upliftment:-

  • Special Central Assistance to Tribal Sub-Scheme (SCA to TSS)
  • Grants-in-Aid  under Article 275 (1) of the Constitution
  • Scheme of Grant-in-Aid to Voluntary Organizations working for the Welfare of Scheduled Tribes  
  • Scheme of Vocational Training in Tribal Areas
  • Development of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs).
  • Scheme of Girls & Boys Hostels for STs
  • Scheme of Ashram Schools in Tribal Sub-Scheme Area
  • Scholarship Schemes for ST Students
  • National Fellowship And Scholarship for Higher education of ST students.
  • Support to Tribal Research Institute (TRIs)
  • Mechanism for Marketing of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) through Minimum   Support Price (MSP)and Development of Value Chain for MFP

National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSTFDC), under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs, also extends financial assistance at concessional rates of interest to Scheduled Tribes for undertaking income generation activities.

This information was given by Union Minister of State for Tribal Affairs Shri Jaswantsinh Bhabhor in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.


NB/SK/jk/Tribal Affairs-LS-1/17-12-2018