Munni Hansda

Munni Hansda, from the Kathikund block of Dumka district has spearheaded a revolutionary movement against mining and other 'development activities' in the Kathikund region. Taking inspiration from her mother, Munni after completing her high school began her career as a voluntary worker giving training in tussar silk production. In her initial years she has extensively worked on women issues ranging from domestic violence, women's health, child marriages and defying the 'dian' superstition in the Santhal region. Later she joined the Jharkhand Ulgulan Manch which is a network of people's movement. Munni has successfully led the Kathikund agitation against the thermal power plant proposed by Kolkata Based RPG owned CESC Ltd (Calcutta Energy Supply Company). The proposal was to set up 1000MW plant in Aamgachi, Pokhoria and Daldali Villages of Kathikund block and MoU was signed with the Government of Jharkhand on September 15th 2005. Munni and her team conducted regular meetings in the village, empowering the villagers about their rights as envisaged in the Constitution and PESA. They emphasised on the power of the gram sabha. She also explained to people the ill effects of mining and industrialization by sharing the experiences of the people in Hazaribagh and Lalmatia mines. Thus successfully the people of Kathikund have stopped CESC from entering the region and acquiring their land. This has been a struggle against the violation of Santhal Pargana Tenancy Act, PESA and other constitutional guarantees to the tribal people.