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Deliberation

Discuss about the Indigenous People Policy Brief for Natural Resources.

In earlier times, the rights and interests of the indigenous people are becoming a significant element of the international law and policy. A declaration had been permitted in September 2007 by the general assembly of the United Nations to protect the rights of the indigenous people. This declaration is significant and foremost to handle and manage the rights of indigenous people in the international law and policy. It also contains minimum standards and norms for the protection, promotion and identification of these human rights. Wide range of global instruments such as ILO Convention 169 and UNDRIP tackle and manage the rights of the indigenous people across the land, and territories. It is evaluated in article 26 of UNDRIP identifies the rights and interests of the indigenous people in order to maintain their reciprocal and strong spiritual relationships with their culture and lands (Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact,  2006).

It has been found that indigenous people maintain good and effective interconnection with territories, resources and land for their business and welfare. It is noted that indigenous people have a strong and heavy relationship with natural resources, lands and territories. In today’s globalization world, land issues are being faced by the indigenous people. Indigenous people are receiving ample of attention compared to other ethnic societies and groups as the indigenous movement to prevent the discrimination among the people. This movement is becoming very strong and unique because the land rights have been tied up with the concept of ILO 169, and along with this, an international convention that is done by UN provides support to the indigenous people for the welfare in the world. It is further noted that politically and social issues affect the rights and interest of the indigenous people all over the world. It is analyzed that implementation towards the protection of land and natural resources are also poor and ineffective (COLARP, 2016).

The land generates a political and economic base for the power structure in the developing nations. Along with this, it also plays a significant role in the welfare and culture of indigenous people. In most of the countries such as Nepal, indigenous people are more than the society and economic asset. It provides a base for personal security, dignity, self recognition, livelihood, customs and self governance. In today’s competitive world, identification and protection of indigenous lands are becoming more difficult with the procedure of globalization. As per the central bureau of statistics, around 40% suits in the Nepal are filed in context of the disputes occurred for the land (United Nations Human Rights, 2013).

Regulations on the Constitution

This may affect the life of the indigenous people in the global world. Along with this, various regulations have been originated in Nepal which is related to the land. However, they are unable to manage and handle land, implement the land reform and completely focus on the contestations of the indigenous people. In addition, it has been stated by Maharjan (2016), various acts have been formulated such as the forest nationalization act 1957, National Parks and Wildlife Conservation Act 1973, Range Land Nationalization Act 1974, and abolition of Kipat Land by the land act 1964 have impacted the livelihoods and welfare of the indigenous people. The nature of indigenous people’s livelihood and welfare are interconnected with common property such as forest land and pasture land, and nationalization acts have been formulated which are prohibited for the indigenous people in terms of utilization of resources. It is evaluated that around 65% of ancestral land of IP are engaged by the national parks and conservation fields which are forcing the group to travel.

NEFIN(in Maharjan 2016) argued that Tharus in Chitwan were replaced from the customary land due to the generation of the Chitwan national park. In the context, Sherpas in the mountain were replaced due to globalization of pasture and range land and Raute and Chepangs could displace from the forest land just because of the nationalization and utilization of forests. Along with this their demand and needs also focus on the rights and interest of the self discrimination to control, supervise and protect the customary land in the global market (Indigenous Peoples', 2017). Due to lack of citizenship certificates, some of the indigenous people are facing ample of difficulties in Nepal. It also affects the forests and common property resources in the country. As per the UNHCR, approx 800,000 individuals are facing complexities due to lack of citizenship registration and it is considered de facto stateless. It is opposing to this fact that there is not any legal inequalities in citizenship legislation for the indegenious people. It has been stated by COLARP (2016), the role and significance of indigenous people in protecting the rights and biodiversity in forests created by the government authorities. Meanwhile, the damage of land and forced displacement also affect the life of ample of indigenous communities. In terms of the indigenous people for the feudal land control, skewed land distribution and unsecure tenure rights and limited access to the natural resources are various reasons.

In Nepal, the government has initiated ample of policies to ensure and handle the rights of indigenous people. The constitution of 1990 ensures the basic rights of the people and introduce ample of constitutional regulations to encourage the equality among the people in Nepal. The multi ethnic, multi lingual and democratic were first introduced in Nepal. Although, various rulers and political parties put forward contending and strong position on land as their propagandas that became vote bank (IWGIA,  2018). It is noted that agricultural transformation, peasantry and land reform are becoming cross cutting and major issues for various political parties and groups in Nepal. After a long time, Nepal disseminated its new constitution on 20th September 2015. In the given table 1, the constitution has formulated effective and unique conditions on the land that strongly related with the rights and welfare of indigenous people. As reflected in state policy, the country has promised for scientific land reform. The constitution has restrained the rights of provincial and federal regulations which are seen contradicted with the condition of schedule 7 interconnected to Article 57 (3), 109, 162 (4) and 197 (COLARP, 2016). Along with this, the process and model of such type of reform seen to be the more complex among their obstacles (Roy and Henriksen, 2010). 

Regulations on the Constitution(COLARP 2016)

Art. 16 Right to survive with self respect: (1) Each and every person must have right to live with self esteem.

Art. 25 Right to property: (1) Each and every person should have the right to obtain, enjoy, sell and dispose of property (2) The constitution must not except in the public interest, obtain, demand, or generate any burden on the property of the people.

Art. 26 Right to religious freedom: (2) Each and every person is free to maintain its independent existence related to the religious.  They should have also right to protect, and manage the religious places and religious trusts as per the low.

Art. 29 Right against exploitation: (1) Each and every person should have the right against exploitation.

Art. 36 Right to food: (1) Each citizen must have the right to food.

Art. 37 Right to housing: (1) Each citizen should have the right to suitable housing.

Art. 38 Right of women: (1) Every woman should provide equal rights and there should not be any discrimination between men and women.

Art. 51 (e) Policies have been made related to land and agriculture reforms: (1) to protect the interests of the farmers, scientific land reform have been made.

Art. 51 (j) Policies have been made related to the social justice and inclusion: (8) to make the indigenous nationalities to make effective and unique decisions in terms of welfare and interest of the indigenous people.

To protect the rights and welfare of the indigenous people some recommendations have been given that are discussed below.

  • The government should ensure the self rule and autonomy of ingenious people and it should also protect the land and resources for the indigenous survival and growth. There should be an agreement between indigenous people and the state.
  • Along with this, effective rules and legislations shall be formulated to promote the indigenous people across the world. The rights of indigenous women, men and children must be protected and should provide satisfaction to them.
  • Some of national legislations must be introduced for the welfare of the indigenous people. Along with this, some strict and administration actions must be taken to protect the effective and unique application of international obligations.
  • Should provide rights to indigenous people over the natural resources such as land.
  • Each and every person should respect IPs rights and interest with modifying ILO convention.
  • Formulating the declaration of Secular state in Nepal.
  • The people should create a strong and favorable environment for the indigenous people.
  • There should not be any discrimination related to legal and constitutional provision.
  • Encouraging and protecting traditional skills and knowledge.
  • Reformulating the entire state structure that will help in providing equal opportunities.

References

Australian Human Rights Commission.

Access date 21 June 2018. “United

Nations Declaration

on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.”

https://www.humanrights.gov.au/publications/un-declaration-rights-indigenous-peoples-1

Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact. 2006.

“Indigenous Peoples’ Human Rights Report.”

https://aippnet.org/indigenous-peoples-human-rights-report/

Consortium for Land Research and Policy Dialogue (COLARP). 2016. Customary Land Rights of Indigenous People in Nepal: Issues and Lessons. Issue No 5

https://colarp.org.np/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/Policy_brief_Aug_2016_final_for_Print.pdf

IWGIA. Access date 21 June 2018.“Land Rights”

https://www.iwgia.org/en/focus/land-rights

Indigenous Peoples' Network for SDGs,

Nepal. 2017. “Report of Nepal's Indigenous Peoples for Voluntary National Review of Nepal.”

https://iphrdefenders.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/SDG-Nepal-shadow-report-2017.pdf

Maharjan, Kabin. 2016. Land contestation in Nepal: Indigenous land tenure and national land policy. Nepal Journal of Social Science and Public Policy. 4(1), pp. 120-141

https://www.nepalpolicynet.com/new/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Kabin-Maharjan-1.pdf

Roy and Henriksen. 2010. Inclusion of indigenous peoples’ rights in the new constitution of Nepal. Review by ILO.

https://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_norm/---normes/documents/publication/wcms_123847.pdf

United Nations Human Rights. 2013.

“Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations Human Rights System.” Fact Sheet No 9/rev 2, New York,Geneva

https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Publications/fs9Rev.2.pdf

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