1. Tribals and Other Traditional Dwellers in Protected Areas in India: Study of Their Rights, Issues and Challenges



Over the years, through its research in social work, MSS Institute of Social work has made consistent contributions and widely acknowledged at public sector as well as civil society organization. The present research study is a two year Major Research Project initiated in the year 2020 to understand the Rights, Issues and challenges of the Tribal and Other Traditional Dwellers in Protected Areas in India. Officiating Principal Dr. Keshav Walke is the Director of the Research Project.

Amount Sponsored & Agency:  40.0 Lakh from Ministry of Tribal Affairs (MoTA), Government of India.

The objectives of the Research study:

  1. To analyse present situation of the tribals and other traditional dwellers affected by the Protected Areas in India with respect to their rights, Issues and Challenges.
  2. To understand impact of Protected Areas on Socio-economic condition, occupation and Livelihood of the affected tribals and other traditional dwellers;
  3. To examine the change in Quality of Life of the affected people after tiger reserve?;
  4. To explain changes with reference to culture, traditions and political systems, relationship with the forest, women’s life experienced by the Tiger Reserve affected Tribals and Other Traditional Dwellers

The Key feature of the Project:

  • The proposed study is focused on four selected Tiger reserve including Dudhwa +Katernighat(Uttar Pradesh), Sundarban(West Bengal), Kanha kisli Tiger Reserve (Madhya Pradesh), Nagarjuna Sagar Srisailam Tiger Reserve (Andhra Pradesh).


  • The overall purpose of the research study is to suggest scientific theoretical cum practical paradigms as Social Work Intervention system in the form of Field Action Project to help tribals and other traditional dwellers in minimizing the issues and dealing with the challenges faced by them.

2. Widows’ Social Security, Issues of Entitlement and Accessibility of Governmental Programmes: A study of Widows in Rural India.

Amount Sponsored & Agency: 6.0 Lakh by Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) (IMPRESS), (Ministry of Human Resource Development), New Delhi.

Project Director: Dr Jyoti Niswade, Associate Professor

Objectives of the study:

  1. To study the awareness about social security and developmental programmes for widows with special reference to their entitlement to pension and accessibility.
  2. To elucidate hindrances while accessing entitlements and benefits of the scheme, difficulties in relation to livelihood opportunities and extent of social oppression and exclusion from all front.
  3. To evaluate monitoring mechanism ensuring implementation and inclusiveness of the policies in terms of gender sensitive approach.
  4. To study opinion of widows on economic empowerment programmes of the Government.
  5. To evaluate the extent and nature of Government and NGOs partnership towards the empowerment of widows.

Key Features:

Five states of India namely Rajasthan, Gujarat, Orissa, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh(including widows of Vrindavan and other pilgrimage sites) are included for the research study considering geographic, economic and cultural parameters. Data is collected with mixed method both quantitative and qualitative. 500 widows included as a sample by equal proportions representing five states of India. Widows of all age group are considered for the purpose of the study. Data collection includes Focused Group Discussions (FGD) and case studies with widows (entitled) and also those who suffered due to non-availability of relevant documents or conditions of entitlements and could not qualify for the benefit of Governmental schemes. Data collection also includes discussions at community level and interviews with key informants, which includes Government agencies and other stakeholders.

The present research may suggest intervention strategies for social work profession and identify the gaps and try to bring out recommendations for uniform policy for all State Governmental Programmes with reference to entitlement and accessibility issues to benefit widows to a wider extent. It may contribute in enhancing developmental programmes more effectively. The research study may analyse, elucidate and evaluate policies of five states of India considered under the study. The comparative analysis of situation of widows, their marginalisation and issues in entitlement and accessibility of benefits under the social security programmes may produce some important findings and recommendations. Some findings of the study shall lead to new vistas of knowledge on women's studies, social policy which may be referred by research scholars, social workers and some policy makers.