Pavitri Manjhi is taking a stand. She’s part of an Adivasi Indigenous community who are at risk of being kicked off their land to make way for two power plants. They stand to lose their farms and livelihoods. But she’s leading the fight back.
Villagers say they were forced to sell their land by agents acting on behalf of two private companies. Many haven’t even been adequately paid. As head of her village council, Pavitri brought people together to file nearly 100 formal complaints. And for that she faces ongoing intimidation.
Local ‘strongmen’ have repeatedly pressured her to withdraw all the complaints. They visited her home and told her: “Everyone who helped you file the complaints are outsiders. They will not be able to save you and we will silence them.” The men returned in the following days to make more threats. Pavitri reported the harassment to the police but little has been done.
For decades, Adivasi people have been forced from their land and had their rights trampled on to make room for business developments. But Pavitri isn’t going anywhere. She’s determined to help her community stand up to big business and protect their ancestral lands.
Tell India to protect Pavitri from harassment now.