India Property Rights Project: Empowering Hundreds of Thousands of Farmers

A property rights revolution is taking root in Gujarat, India, that is spreading across rural India, securing land title for hundreds of thousands of farmers. The evidence of success is so strong that this movement is expected to spread to 900 million plots of land in India and millions more across Asia, Africa, and Latin America. [button url=”#donate” style=”blue” size=”medium”]Make a donation now![/button] Hernando de Soto has called international attention to the lack of property rights in developing nations, resulting in the single greatest deterrent to economic development. But recognizing this isn’t enough. “De Soto’s approach to making change has had limited success so far,” remarks Barun Mitra, President of the Liberty Institute in New Delhi. “De Soto has written books,” says Mitra, “spoken at lofty forums, advised heads of state, suggested ways of changing the law to recognize the property rights of the millions of poor. But this approach has invariably run into opposition by powerful sections of society who have so far benefited from the prevailing lack of clear titles.” Frustrated by the lack of impact from academic conferences, Barun has decided that a real and practical demonstration of establishing property title among the vast population of rural farmers is the only way to prove the value of these ideas. Such proof will not only win over and empower the rural poor, but will captivate the interests of social and political leaders across the ideological spectrum. BUILDING THE FOUNDATION On a Sunday morning in January 2014, three hundred farmers came from miles around Sagai village in the western Indian state of Gujarat. Most of them left their homes at 6:30 AM walking, riding busses, and sharing rides on jeeps to gather in time for the noon meeting of the Action Research in Community Health & Development (ARCH) center …

How 2 Days in India Made Our Year

Starting off 2014 with a bang, 200 freedom fighters from 41 countries gathered in New Delhi, India for the second annual Asia Liberty Forum (ALF). “Hundreds came, from countries like Afghanistan and Bhutan to Tajikistan, Thailand and Vietnam. Those with decades of experience met others who had just joined the movement. Some initiatives wanted to promote the studies of classical liberalism while others engaged in practical initiatives. Yet all shared the desire to prove that individual freedom and free markets in open societies provide the best policy solutions,” observed Rainer Heufers, who spoke at our Lausanne conference last year. We were pleased to join in on the excitement as ISIL President, Ken Schoolland, was invited to speak at the event on the panel From Aid to Enterprise. “The Asia Liberty Forum was a magnificent congregation of free market activists from around the world. It was impressive to make the contacts and to learn what projects are being undertaken,” reported Pres. Schoolland about the event, “Among the most impressive is the India Property Rights Project of the Liberty Institute (LI) and Action Research in Community Health (ARCH). And I was stunned by the extensive ground work performed by the India Institute on ‘The Private School Revolution in Bihar.’” He was not alone in being impressed by the event, Prof. Cris Lingle, who also spoke at last year’s ISIL conference, “I have to say that it might have been one of the most interesting and exciting such events I have ever attended anywhere. It is quite clear that Asia is fertile terrain for spreading the ideas and ideals of supporting human liberty.” ISIL has been hosting World Conferences for a number of years, while at the start there were very few such events for international libertarians, today the number of providers has …

Jonathan Gullible 2013 Fall Newsletter

KAZAKH & RUSSIAN MUSICAL SLOVAKIAN THEATER FINLAND E-BOOK SERBIAN LIBRARIES THE NETHERLANDS TOME AFRICA & INDIA THEATER CHINA SEMINARS THE MOVIE: WHO IS JG? RECOGNITION HOLIDAY GIFT SEASON 2013 SUMMER ACTIVITY KAZAKH & RUSSIAN MUSICAL The musical production of JG for young audiences in Kazakhstan is progressing nicely. This will be accomplished in Russian, Kazakh, and English. From the formal announcement seeking support: “The Kazakh composer Lyudmila Melnikova is writing a musical for children and youth about freedom and justice, inspired by the fairy tale of Кen Schoolland’s book, ‘The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible.’ While the work so far has been without cost, money is essential to record the music in a production studio. We ask you to render partial financial assistance as you think fit and possible. The necessary amount is US$1000 in total. Fragments of music are now available for impressions. Libretto and lyrics for some character songs have also been created. We hope for your understanding and support.”      Writes Lyumila, “I have written the music to the fairy-tale, I only need to record it in studio. Now I prepare staging of fairy tale’s chapter of ‘Turtle and Rabbit’ in puppet theater for children. I appreciate your desire of financial assistance in studio. It’s really nice to meet you. I send you one more part of blues ‘I want to prohibit the sun’ from the chapter ‘Candles and Coats’.” “Today, at Kazakhstan TV will be first night of your fairy-tail ‘Rabbit and Tortoise’ in children’s program “Spoki noki”. I send you its fragment in the Russian language. Authors of fairy tale are mentioned in a full version of program, in the beginning and the end, in theaters. I will prepare this fairy-tail in English soon and send you this full version. Aloha Lyudmila.” 1. Сказка Кролик и Черепаха_урез(1).mp4 (80.7 MB) Ссылка для скачивания файлов: http://files.mail.ru/909C6FB361FC4215BD313AB587D49379 Файлы …

Sep 21-22 Workshop on Forest Rights Act — Jamshedpur, Jharkhand

Workshop on Forest Rights Act Strengthening the Gram Sabha www.RighttoProperty.org 21-22 September2013 Patmada , East Singhbhum, Jharkhand Organised by ARCH Vahini & Liberty Institute with the support of Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom 21 September 2013 • 10 am -12.30 pm: Field visit and demonstration of use of GPS at Sootriuli Dangar village, near Jamshedpur • 3 pm – 4 pm: Introduction and demonstration of www.RighttoProperty.org • 4 pm – 5 pm: Essentials of FRA, and the challenges • 6 pm – 8pm: Sharing of Experience regarding implementation of FRA 22 September 2013 • 9.30 am- 12 noon: Role of Gram Sabha in FRA • 2 pm – 4 pm: Strengthening the Gram Sabha • 4 pm – 5 pm: Conclusion Contact details: Coordinator: Arvind Anjum, Jamshedpur Mobile: +91-94311 13667 Email: arvindanjum5@gmail.com ARCH Vahini, Baroda Email: m_ambrish@hotmail.com Website: www.archgujarat.org Liberty Institute, New Delhi Email: info@righttoproperty.org , barun@libertyinstitute.org.in, Tel: +91-11-28031309 Websites: www.InDefenceofLiberty.org | www.EmpoweringIndia.org | www.RighttoProperty.org

Sep 16-17 Gaya, Bihar – Workshop on Land Rights under the Forest Rights Act

Property Rights For the Poor and the Forest Right Act 16 & 17 September, 2013 at Jeevan Sangham, Bodhgaya, Bihar Workshop organised by ARCH Vahini, Gujarat; Janmukti Vimarsh, Bihar & Liberty Institute, New Delhi with the support of Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom Tentative Program: 16 September 2013 10.30 – 11.30 am: Inaugural Session Welcome by C. A. Priyadarshi & Banarsi Alam Inaugural Comments by Barun Mitra & Trupti Parekh 11.45 am – 2.00 pm: Session I Land Rights and Property Rights (What is the Meaning) for the Poor 2 pm to 3 pm: Lunch 4 pm to 6.30pm: Session II Land Rights and Property Rights to the poor: Understanding the issues and future course of action Concluding Remarks by Ambrish Mehta 7 pm – 9pm: Session III Cultural Programme by Banarsi & Team 17 September 2013 9.00am to 12 noon: Session IV Forest Right Act: The challenges and way ahead Presentations by A. Mehta, Manoj Kumar Babulal, Albela, KailashBharti, and Trupti Mehta Round Table Discussion 1 pm – 2 pm: Lunch 2.00 pm – 5.00 pm: Session V Demonstration of technique: Claim process of the forest right (Venue village Somia-Kevalia). Solidarity address: the village representatives share their experiences Vote of thanks: Kailash Bharti, President, Mazdoor Kisan samiti Contact Persons: Janmukti Vimarsh: Priyadarshi Ashok 09431077343, Ms. Poonam 09334269794, Kailash Bharti 09939376968, Jeevan Sangham 09431051659 ARCH Vahini, Baroda Email: m_ambrish@hotmail.com Website: www.archgujarat.org Liberty Institute, New Delhi Email: info@righttoproperty.org , barun@libertyinstitute.org.in, Tel: +91-11-28031309 Websites: www.InDefenceofLiberty.org | www.EmpoweringIndia.org | www.RighttoProperty.org

Aug 24-25 Sheopur, Madhya Pradesh – Workshop on Land Rights under the Forest Rights Act

Event Details Location: Sheopur district of Madhya Pradesh Venue: Eco-Centre of the Forest Department Date: Aug 24-25 Attendees: Roughly 70; district- and block-level officials, field staff of the forest dept., village representatives from panchayat We have just held a very successful workshop on the Forest Rights Act (FRA) in the Sheopur district of Madhya Pradesh. Sheopur is about 400 km south west of Delhi, on the border of Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The Sheopur district was created in 1999, by separating it from the Morena district. In 2006, Sheopur was among the 250 most backward districts in India. The district covers about 6,600 sq km, and over 60% of the land area is classified as forest. The district contains the Kuno Wildlife Sanctuary, with a total area of 345 sq km, of which about 31 sq km is revenue land. The district has some of the poorest communities in the country including a large tribal population. It is home to the Sahariya tribe, which is classified as a Primitive Tribal Group and is one of the most backward tribal groups in India. The 2011 Census puts the population at 687,000, and 84% of the people live in the 587 villages. The tribal population is estimated at 140,000, about 21% of the total, and 98% of whom belong to the Sahariya tribe. On Aug 24, 2013 we visited one such hamlet, Hanumankheda, barely 10 km from the district headquarter of Sheopur. For at least a couple of kilometres around this area, there was hardly a tree standing, let alone any trace of forest. The soil was rocky, and land was marginal with low productivity, despite its proximity to an irrigation canal. Cattle grazing is one of the key economic activities, which requires pasture land. Another striking feature of the area was …