Constitution of Biodiversity Management Committees (BMCs):
The Biodiversity Act and Rules provide that the local bodies shall constitute Biodiversity Management Committees within its area of jurisdiction. The Assam State Biodiversity Board facilitates constitution of BMCs at Anchalik Panchayat level in the state. These committees shall work for the purpose of promoting conservation, sustainable use and documentation of biological diversity including preservation of habitats, conservation of land races, folk varieties and cultivars, domesticated stocks and breeds of animals and microorganisms and chronicling of knowledge relating to biological diversity.
The Biodiversity Management Committees will comprise of:
- At least seven nominated members by the local body, of which not less than one third shall be women. The Chairperson of the BMC shall be elected by its members.
- Seven local knowledgeable persons, drawn amongst the herbalists, agriculturalists, Non-Timber Forest produce collectors, community workers, fisher folks, representatives of user associations, community workers, academicians and any person/representative of organization whom the local body trusts that he/she can significantly contribute to the mandate of the Biodiversity Management Committee. The proportion of members belonging to the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe shall not be less than Schedules Caste/Scheduled Tribe population percentage of the district where such a committee is set up. All the above should be residents within the said local body limits and be in the voter’s list.
- Five invitees representing government departments namely forest, fisheries, agriculture, horticulture and education.
List of 189 Biodiversity Management Committees (BMCs) constituted in Assam
In addition, there are three Autonomous Councils in the State viz. Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC), Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council (KAAC) and Dima Hasao Autonomous Council (DHAC). The Board facilitates constitution of BMCs at Forest Range Jurisdictions in the Autonomous Councils. The status of constitution of BMCs in the Autonomous Councils are as under:
- 16 BMCs constituted against the proposed 21 BMCs in BTC. (List of 16 BMCs constituted in BTC)
- 10 BMCs constituted against proposed 10 BMCs in KAAC (List of 10 BMCs constituted in KAAC)
- Constitution of 9 BMCs are under process in DHAC.