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Brief Report : Paidal March for Jungle and land rights 2019

We have successfully completed a march with close to 10,000 people including children, men, women and even senior citizens of tribal communities from 20 districts of Jharkhand for their right to the Forests and Land. The march, also called ‘Paidal march’ (Marching on foot) began on 20th February from Columbus ground at Hazaribagh and concluded at Ranchi on 27th February covering 110 kilometers.  The demands are simple – full rights of the tribal communities on the land, water and other resources of the forests from which they are being systematically alienated. Earlier it was the British who exploited the forest dwellers and after Independence, the Indian Forest Act ignored their rights depriving them of the usage of the forest and its resources which they always had access to and which always belonged to them since time immemorial. However, later the Government of India recognised the injustice done to the forest dwellers and brought the “Schedule Tribe and Other Traditional
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Dear Friends, The blessed month of Ramadan has started - may Allah bestow His mercy and blessings on you and your families. Month of Ramzan is known for charity, the third pillar of Islam and Muslims have spiritual obligations to pay their Zakat, Sadaqah, Fidya or Kafarah this month. Other charities are almost a person's will but Zakat is necessary for the people's own assets and properties. Quran has designated eight categories of reason which are zakatable.  freeing captives [or slaves]  is one of those (see Quran-9:60). Being a member of community I have seen people donating their Zakat for many purposes except freeing captives or slaves just because many of them believe that slavery doesn't exist on this planet which is factually wrong, the slavery has changed its form but it still is live and intense more than ever.... In 2006, I had established an organization, which is working to rescue and rehabilitate trafficked girls and helping communities to lift themsel

Forest, Land Rights March on Foot, 2019

             Let the justice prevail,                                    let all have equal rights                       Let each have his/her own land and let each have own sky Forest, Land Rights March on Foot, 2019                              St Columba's Stadium HazariBagh to Raj-Bhavan Ranchi 20 February to 27 February 2019 Dear Friends, Our forefathers have sacrificed their lives for the freeing, beautifying and conserving Jharkhand. To conserve the greenery, the free-flowing rivers and creeks, tall mountains, ever-fertile farms, our forefathers have fought wild animals like snakes, tigers and bears. Toady, we need to save our land and the sand, water, forest, trees, rivers, creeks, farms therein from the destructive attacks and theft by the rich, the corporate families and the government. You all are aware of what is currently unfolding in Jharkhand. Thousands of our forefathers like Siddu, Ka

Idea of Protectionism and Rights of survivors

Recently, an article from The Guardian titled “ Prison would have been better, “  about Sunitha Krishnan's NGO Prajwala and her reply to the same has made a new buzz in the social sector. Like everything else, people have the privilege to take sides with either party. Some think it is a global conspiracy against anti trafficking warriors and some think that Sunitha Krishnan is guilty of not managing her shelter well. It may be worthwhile to recall that many shelter homes have been in news for all the wrong reasons. Many organizations have been blamed for many crimes and cruelty against their inmates. From Muzaffarpur shelter home to Dhenkanal shelter home case, it has given us enough reason to believe that shelters and the whole protection mechanism has some unidentified problem which is being ignored by the NGO sector as well as the Government. The article and the reply from Sunitha, both have enough reason to be believed. Both are equally right and we can’t blame anyone. The

Nanhi : The mourner

Nanhi is Dom, also known as Mirasi, she lives in Narnaund Tehsil of Hisar District of Haryana with her extended family. Dom and Mirasi are almost the same caste excepting their religious beliefs which divide them into Scheduled caste and other backward caste. Nanhi is a Dom and Hindu but she also has some Muslim relative. The caste traditionally works to entertain and also work as genealogists of local land-lords. Their women often (hired as professional mourners) sing in happy moments and mourn upon instances of death, on behalf of landlords in exchange for food grains to survive. This is their traditional work which they continue to do, for lack of appropriate opportunities for livelihood. Meanwhile, male members of the family are adopting different kinds of work to earn their livelihood. Nanhi’s husband Suresh is a sewing master and her elder son Sonu (25) is a barber, Deepak (22) is a motor mechanic and her younger son Anwar (21) has just completed his B.Sc and is exploring his ca

Why India still consists a large number of people in Modern day Slavery- 1

The foot soldiers of human rights movement In 2008, I joined an organization to lead a project (which is Pan India Government scheme for protecting child rights and it is also known for its work on Child protection including Child marriages and trafficking.) This project was initiated as private effort which became a government scheme as it had shown its major impact in the field of child protection. After joining this project I met my colleagues who were working as field workers and have assignment to visit field and directly deal with children in need. I found them unwilling and looking depressed. I suggested them that if they don’t want to work with this project they should do some interesting which they find connected to them as they were energetic youths. They were silent and said they will try to overcome and work with passion. After a brief orientation I wonder to learn that they are working for  Rs 1500/month salary which was 50% of minimum wage prescribed by Government

Muslim society: Institutionalized Philanthropy vs instant Charity

Goodwill should be “not charity, but a chance” for people in need. Parliament of India had passed landmark legislation in 1986 namely " the Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Divorce) Act " to dilute the Judgment of Supreme Court of India in the matter of Mohd. Ahmed Khan v. Shah Bano Begum (1985 SCR (3) 844). The law diluted a secular judgment of the Supreme Court and, in reality, denied even utterly destitute Muslim divorcees the right to alimony from their former husbands. However, the newly enacted Act clearly says that the magistrate would order the Waqf created under section 9 of Wakf Act, 1954 to pay a nominal maintenance to the divorcee women. It is well know fact that the judgment of Supreme court was (in favor of Shahbano Begum who was 62 at the time) widely criticized by Muslim community, and Government was forced to introduce this law. Scholars and socio-political leaders considered it as a conservative response towards a secular and progress