For the last two and a half decades the BJP has made inroads into the tribal belt, which was once the bailiwick of the Congress. It has now planned eight tribal parks in this belt comprising Danta in north Gujarat to Umargam in Valsad and Dangs in southeast of the state. Out of the eight, two tribal parks are coming up in Chhotaudepur and Dahod district, said Dharmendra Panelia, regional manager, Vadodara, of the Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC).
The government has also decided to set up industrial estates for Micro, Small, Medium units in talukas that are declared tribal talukas. The aim is to create employment in the tribal belt and also encourage entrepreneurship among the tribals, said Dr Kuber Dindor, Tribal Development Minister.
To encourage entrepreneurs to set up shop in the industrial estates, the state government has launched schemes to attract investment. The first is the Atmanirbhar Gujarat Yojama-2022, under which general category investors are given subsidy for setting up units, whereas under the Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Udhyog Uday Yojna, SC/ST entrepreneurs setting up MSME are given subsidy.
Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe entrepreneurs are given a higher subsidy under this scheme, compared to the general investor.
However, Vansda MLA Anant Patel from the Congress doubts that the tribal park will increase tribal entrepreneurs, because very few tribals are financially empowered to set up units. Patel said that a lot many hotels have come up in tribal areas, where the tribal is the owner of the land but once the agriculture land is converted into non-agriculture land, a non tribal takes over. This is just another ruse to snatch tribal land, alleged Chaitar Vasava, AAP MLA from Dediapada.