The Fruits of Baijnathdih

Photo: Mr. Man Singh Murmu

Five years ago, Mr. Man Singh Murmu of Baijnathdih Village near Jamshedpur was finding it hard to make ends meet for himself and his family. Residing in a rain-shadow area with virtually no agricultural activity in the entire village, the condition of his co-villagers was no better. The Community Services Department, Jamshedpur, correctly analysed that the need was improving environmental conditions through tree plantation. It was looking for a leader from within the community to mobilise community support. Mr. Man Singh Murmu rose to the occasion and successfully motivated the other members of his village to actively participate in tree plantation on their waste lands.

In fact, the leadership abilities displayed by Mr. Murmu ultimately led to the formation of Baijnathdih Forest Protection Group with him as the President. The group took up the responsibility for identifying waste land for tree plantation, for planting and taking care of the saplings.

In partnership with the company, the diligent efforts of the group have borne fruits. Today about 60 acres of waste land have been brought under plantation with fruit trees. The plantation has positively impacted the environment and has also supplemented the incomes of the villagers, thereby upgrading the social and economic fabric of the region.

Mr Murmu, who also works as a guard in a private security firm, says with pride ‘I would not have become what I am today if Community Services of Tata Motors had not come to my village. Today my fellow villagers and my family have gained enormously in terms of both income and a healthy community life. I take interest in other aspects of development for my village in consultation with my co-villagers. Acknowledging our unity and attitude towards development, support has been extended from the Government as well and a 200 metres. PCC Link Road and one big Culvert has been developed, which has created access to better communication facility for the villagers’.

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