From the mid-nineteenth century, Waste Land Rules were enacted in various parts of the country. By these Rules uncultivated lands were taken over and given to select individuals.
Forest Acts were also being enacted in the different provinces. Through these Acts some forests which produced commercially valuable timber like deodar or sal were declared ‘Reserved’. No pastoralist was allowed access to these forests. Other forests were classified as ‘Protected’.
These Forest Acts changed the lives of pastoralists in the following manner:
They were prevented from entering many forests that had earlier provided valuable forage for their cattle.
In the areas they were allowed entry, their movements were regulated.
They needed a permit for entry. The timing of their entry and departure was specified, and the number of days they could spend in the forest was limited.
Pastoralists could no longer remain in an area even if forage was available, the grass was succulent and the undergrowth in the forest was ample.
If they overstayed they were liable to fine