A series of training cum awareness programmes were today held across all Forest divisions of Kathua district to acquaint the stakeholders with Forest Rights Act (Schedule Tribes & other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006).The training programme for Kathua Sub-Division was held by District Administration under the chairmanship of Deputy Commissioner, Om Prakash, wherein officers of Forest, Revenue and Rural Development Departments participated.The DC impressed upon the trainees to have in depth understanding of their roles in line with the powers conferred under the act. He said one of the objectives of the act was to strengthen the conservation regime of the forests by including the responsibilities and authority on Forest Rights holders for sustainable use, conservation of biodiversity and maintenance of ecological balance.The resource person, Divisional Forest Officer, threw light on various aspects of the legislation, especially the rights of the forest dwelling tribal communities and other traditional forest dwellers, to forest resources. The role of different departments in achieving the objective of the Schedule Tribes & other Traditional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest Rights) Act, 2006 was also explained by the concerned officer.Earlier, the DC held threadbare discussions with elected DDC members on the Forest Right Act. The modalities for constituting the District and Sub-District committees and process for nominating members were also discussed at the meeting.Additional Deputy Commissioner, Atul Gupta; ACR, Devinder Paul; SDM Hiranagar Rakesh Kumar Sharma; Tehsildar HQ, Suninderjeet Kour; BDO Kathua, Rupali Jasrotia; BDO Hiranagar, Sheetal and other concerned officers were present. Similar training programmes were also held at Basohli, Bani and Billawar Forest Divisions where ADCs, SDMs and officers of stakeholder departments attended the training programmes.