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India Eco Development Project

Concept & Objectives

Notable Case Studies

In Mannakkudy and Paliyakudy Tribal settlements, there are 4 EDCs and 385 families. These EDCs could do away with the money lenders and outsiders who had been harvesting their pepper crop for the last 25 years. Their financial status has significantly increased since the past 5 years. The 152 families whose main income was black dammer collection from the sanctuary also have stopped the same since the functioning of EDCs.

In Sathram, a backward colony of 120 families, 64 families who had been regularly collecting Cinnamon bark for sale have stopped the same. The commercial collection of other PA resources like black dammer, reeds, firewood, jungle wood pole, and thatching grass has been stopped. Earlier there existed maximum number of forest cases against the inhabitants of Sathram. No more cases prevail since the functioning of EDCs.

An Eco-development Committee named Ex-vayana Bark collectors EDC (23members) is formed for the vayana bark (Cinnamomum sp.) collectors in and around Kumily. Earlier a number of forest cases were booked against this group. The quantity of Vayana bark having been collected by them was assessed to be 30 Mt. per year. They have stopped the same since the formation of EDCs. They now help in protection. Several offenders including poachers have been apprehended by this group. A scheme formulated for them known as “Protection Oriented Adventurous Trekking and Camping Scheme(The Thekkady Tiger Trail)” got the recognition of Pacific Asia Travel Association during October 1999, and is also selected for the “Award for excellence in Best Eco-tourism Project 1998” – by Ministry of Tourism, Government of India on 21-01-2000.

Another scheme named Tribal Trackers cum Guides services (EDC) in which 20 trained youths from Mannakkudy and Paliyakkudy find employment. Their services are hired by local hoteliers. They do a remarkable service in the daytime protection of sandal trees.

By the formation of SAPP-EDC (Swamy Ayyappan Poonkavana Punarudharana EDC) 2,00,000 poles in a year in the Poonkavanam portion of the Sanctuary could be saved during the last two pilgrimage seasons. The EDC members offer basic facilities to pilgrims and ensure cleanliness along the traditional routes and help in the conservation of nature.

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