BIODIVERSITY MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE (BMC)
THE TRIPURA BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY RULES (2006) STIPULATES:
- Every local body shall constitute a Biodiversity Management Committee within its area of jurisdiction. Accordingly, Biodiversity Management Committees are to be constituted at all Panchayats, Municipalities and Corporations.
- The Biodiversity Management Committees constituted under Sub Rule (1) shall consist of a Chairperson and not more than six members nominated by the local body, of whom, not less than one third shall be women and not less than 18% should belong to Scheduled castes/ Scheduled tribes. The six persons being so nominated shall include herbalists, agriculturists, Non-Timber Forest Produces collectors/traders, fisher folk, representatives of user associations, community workers, academicians and any person/ representative of organization, on whom the local body trusts that he can significantly contribute to the mandate of the Biodiversity Management Committee. The proportion of members belonging to the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled tribe shall not be less than Scheduled Caste / Scheduled tribe percentage of the district, where such a committee is set up. All the above should be residents with in the said local body limits and be in the voters list.
- The local body shall nominate six special invitees from forest, agriculture, animal husbandry, livestock, health, fisheries and education departments.
- The Chairperson of the Biodiversity Management Committee shall be Chairperson of the local body and the Secretary of the local body shall be the member Secretary of the Biodiversity Management Committee, who will maintain all the records. The Chairperson of the Biodiversity Management Committee shall have the casting vote in case of a tie.
- The Chairperson of the Biodiversity Management Committee shall have a tenure of three years.
- The local Member of the Legislative Assembly(MLA) OR Member of Parliament (MP) would be special invitees to the meetings of the Biodiversity Management Committees at different levels.
- A technical support group comprising of experts in the field of biodiversity drawn from government agencies, Non Governmental Organizations, academic field, community and individuals shall be established by District Panchayat/District administration. The expert group shall lend support to Biodiversity Management Committees.
- The key mandate of the Biodiversity Management Committees will be to ensure conservation, utilization and equitable sharing of benefits from the biodiversity. The Biodiversity Management Committees shall facilitate preparation of people’s Biodiversity Registers at District, Block and Village Panchayat/ Municipality/ Municipal Corporation levels by the respective Biodiversity Management Committees using the process and the format set by the Board.
HOW TO CONSTITUTE BMC?
- The BMCs will comprise of the president (president of the respective local body) and secretary (secretary of the local body).
- There will be six other members who will be nominated by the panchayat committee. They could be an agricultural representative, Collectors\traders of non-timber forest produces, fishermen, organisations using biodiversity, social workers, teachers and researchers. Two of the members should be women and one should belong to the Scheduled Caste\Scheduled tribe community.
- The members should be those residing in the panchayat area and should be included in the voters list of the panchayat.
- Officials of the Forest and Wildlife Department, Agriculture Department, Animal Husbandry Department, Health Department, Fisheries Department, Education Department and research institutions will be special invitees on these committees. The local MLA and MP will be invitees to the meetings of the BMCs.
THE FUNCTIONS OF BMC:
Biodiversity Management Committee (BMC) have the required legislative support and is in a position to strike roots more effectively. Most significantly, BMCs would help to take science right down to the grassroots,since,the rules lay down that :
- “The main function of the BMC is to prepare People’s Biodiversity Registers in consultation with local people. The Registers shall contain comprehensive information on availability and knowledge of local bio-resources, their medicinal or any other use or any other traditional knowledge associated with them.”
- The other functions of the BMCs include giving advice on any matter referred to it by the State Biodiversity Board or National Biodiversity Authority for granting approval to accessing biological resources of the area, to maintain data about local traditional and indigenous knowledge holders using biological resources.
- The PBRs will be maintained and validated by the BMCs.
- The Committee shall also maintain Register giving information about the details of the access to biological resources and traditional knowledge granted, details of the collection fee imposed and details of the benefits derived from the use of biological resource and mode of their sharing.
THE PREPARATION OF PEOPLE’S BIODIVERSITY REGISTERS:
People’s Biodiversity Registers: The Register of the people, by the people and for the people
The objectives of the PBR formation are:
- To claim justified benefit sharing by the local people for any commercial use of their BD resources (BD elements + knowledge)
- To explore enterprises based on their BD resources
- To develop exhaustive data base to help effective intervention for development and conservation.
- Along with these information, the Registers will also contain extensive annotations on the landscape of the area, present land use patterns and the same over a timescape, an overview of the peoplescape and other relevant data deemed necessary for planning proper future strategies of local level management of resources.
Preparation of Peoples Biodiversity Registers include
- Comprehensive information on availability and knowledge of local biological resources, their medicinal or any other use or any other traditional knowledge associated with them;
- Data about the local vaids and practitioners using the biological resources
- Details of the access to biological resources and traditional knowledge granted details of the collection fee imposed and details of the benefits derived and the mode of their sharing.
- The major ways of collecting data for the PBR includes
- Interviews of knowledgeable individuals/ veterans;
- Group interviews;
- Field observations by volunteers and technical support groups and
- Existing official documents.