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Grassroots Organisation Engaging Conservation Agency in Nepal: A case of indigenous fishing communities' struggle for right to fishing in South-Central Nepal

Research reports

This case examines the struggle of the Bote, Majhi and Musahar communities for their right to fish in a river and have access to local forest resources in South-Central Nepal. From the later part of the 1960s, the Nepali government, with assistance from international agencies (such as the United Nations) began to implement conservation policies. The Royal Chitwan National Park (RCNP) was set up particularly for the protection of one-horned rhinos whose population had significantly declined by the 1950s. These policies were based on the assumption that people were the main culprits in the destruction of wildlife and, therefore, they needed to be excluded from the conservation areas. After the introduction of these policies, their entry to the forest was severely restricted and fishing in the river made illegal. By the mid-1980s, ferrying was banned across the river.

Anil Bhattarai and Sudeep Jana