Chapters :
  • LIBERAL INTELLECTUAL PRINCIPLES – 21
  • Administration of Scheduled and Tribal Areas
  • Article 244(1)
  • Article 244(2)
  • Administration of Scheduled Areas
  • Administration of Tribal Areas

LIBERAL INTELLECTUAL PRINCIPLES – 21

 Administration of Scheduled and Tribal Areas

Certain regions within the territory of India that are inhabited by aboriginals or original inhabitants are designated as ‘Scheduled Areas’ and ‘Tribal Areas’. Article 244 in Part X of the constitution provides a special system of administration for these areas. Article 244(1): It says that the provisions of the fifth schedule shall apply to the administration of scheduled areas and scheduled tribes in all the states except Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. Article 244(2): It says that the provisions of the sixth schedule shall apply to the administration of tribal areas in Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram.
Scheduled Areas Tribal Areas
The scheduled areas are inhabited by aboriginal people who have assimilated the culture of the majority population in their way of life. They are socially and economically backward and need special protection from the state. The tribal areas are inhabited by aboriginal people who have not yet assimilated the culture of the majority population in their way of life. They are primitive people and need special protection from the state to preserve their customs, culture and civilization.
  • Administration of Scheduled Areas
In the administration of scheduled areas in a state, the central government has more powers than the state government. The fifth schedule provides provisions for the administration of scheduled areas and scheduled tribes in states other than Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. The provisions of the fifth schedule are as follows:
  1. The President is authorised to designate an area as a scheduled area. He can increase or decrease the area of such areas; alter the boundary; revoke such designation to an area and redesignate an area to be scheduled area in consultation with the governor of the concerned state.
  2. The Governors of the states having scheduled area have to submit an annual report regarding the administration of such areas to the President.
  3. The union government is empowered to give directions to the state governments in the matters of administration of scheduled areas.
  4. The Governor is authorised to declare an act of the Parliament or the state legislature not applicable or applicable with modifications and exceptions to the scheduled areas.
  5. Tribal Advisory Council(TAC) has to be established in every state having scheduled areas to advise on the welfare and development of tribal people.
  6. The President can direct the formation of a TAC in states that have scheduled tribes population but not scheduled areas.
  7. The TAC consists of 20 members, 3/4th of whom are representatives of scheduled tribes in the state legislative assembly.
  8. The Governor is empowered to make regulations for the peace and good government of scheduled areas in consultation with the TAC.
  9. The Governor can make regulations to restrict the transfer of land by and among the tribal people; to regulate the business of money lending in such areas; to amend or repeal an act of Parliament or the state legislature that is operative in the area with the permission of the President.
  10. The President is required to appoint a commission to evaluate and report on the administration of scheduled areas and scheduled tribes.
  • Administration of Tribal Areas
The tribal areas in the states of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram are provided with special administrative machinery to ensure their socio-economic development along with the protection of their unique culture, customs and civilization. The sixth schedule contains provisions for the administration of tribal areas in the states of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram. The provisions of the sixth schedule are as follows:
  1. The tribal areas in the states of Assam, Meghalaya, Tripura and Mizoram are constituted as ‘Autonomous Districts’ with a considerable level of autonomy to govern their affairs.
  2. The Governor is authorised to increase or decrease the area and alter the boundary of autonomous districts.
  3. The Governor can further divide an autonomous district into multiple autonomous regions when multiple tribal communities live in the same autonomous district.
  4. A district council is created for each autonomous district and a regional council is created for each autonomous region within an autonomous district.
  5. The district and regional councils are responsible for the administration of the areas under their jurisdiction. They can also constitute village councils or courts to deal with the cases between the tribes. The Governor determines the jurisdiction of the High Court of the state over these cases.
  6. The district and regional councils can make laws on matters such as social customs, marriage, divorce, inheritance of property, forests, land, canal water and so on and all such laws require the assent of the governor.
  7. The district council can make regulations for restricting the money lending and trading activities of non-tribals in the tribal areas and all such regulations need the assent of the governor.
  8. The district council can establish and manage primary schools, local markets, roads, dispensaries and so on.
  9. The district council can impose certain taxes and collect land revenue.
  10. The acts of Parliament and state legislature are not applicable to these areas or they are applicable with modifications and exceptions.
The Governor can appoint a commission to study the administration of these areas and submit a report on the same to him.
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