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Conservation, relocation and the social consequences of conservation policies in protected areas: Case study of the Sariska Tiger Reserve, India

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Author(s): Torri Maria

Journal: Conservation & Society
ISSN 0972-4923

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 54;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Sariska Tiger Reserve | relocation | wilderness | conservation policies | local communities | conservation authorities | India

ABSTRACT
The coercive, top-down approach to managing protected areas has created socio-cultural disruption and often even failed to conserve biodiversity. This top-down conservation approach has led to management decisions seriously threatening the livelihood and cultural heritage of local people, such as the resettlement programme established to move people from villages inside the park, and the reduction of access to resources and traditional rights. This article presents findings from an analysis of the resettlement program, documenting the consequences of the relocation process on peopleā€²s livelihood in the Sariska Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan, India. The results show that local people have had little influence on the relocation process, and hardly any say on the limitations of access and use of resources linked to the constitution of this protected area. The article challenges the existing conservation paradigm practiced currently by the authorities in most protected areas in India, and calls for park management to rethink their vision of conservation, by adopting new approaches toward a more collaborative paradigm integrating conservation and development needs.
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