The conservation effort in Suruguda started due to a conflict with another village. This caused the villagers to start a Forest Protection Committee (FPC) which was still largely informal in 1985. This evolved into the Van Suraksha Samiti (VSS) in 1994 under the Joint Forest Management (JFM) program of the Forest Department. For the protection of forests initially thengapalli was practised and then they started imposing fines on anyone who broke the rules. This helped regenerate the surrounding forest and the people reaped the benefits of this regrowth. There were constraints due to the role of the forest department in JFM, inequity in decision making and benefit sharing, emergence of factional politics and encroachment on grazing lands.