150 families in danger: rock blasting 30 feet away

150 families hide inside their homes as rocks are blasted barely 30 feet away from their village. Government regulations, which dictate at least a 500-meter distance between a mine and a neighboring village are blatantly disregarded as stones and gravel shower down upon the village, reducing their homes to shambles.

In Borna Pahar village of Sahebganj district in Jharkhand, the mine operators are putting lives and properties of 150 resident families in grave danger. Those who can afford to, have already  moved home to the bottom of the hill. However, many residents cannot afford to move, and are forced to face the consequences.

Initially having sold their ancestral land to the contractors at a measly rate of 2000 INR per acre, the residents now suffer as the mines have crept closer and closer to their homes. Their life before the mines was self-sustained, primarily dependent on agriculture. However, battling price rises has left them unable to afford food nor alternate housing. The community has approached the operators several times, only to be beaten and abused.

Community Correspondent Shikha Kumari Paharin believes direct intervention from the District Collector of Sahebganj, Mr. Umesh Prasad Singh is the only way to stop the mine and save the villagers. She has submitted a written application and has sought an appointment with Mr. Singh as well.

While Shikha mobilizes the community and campaigns on the ground, you can help her cause by calling/messaging the District Collector of Sahebganj (+91-9431152021) in support of her cause. Shikha remains grateful to everyone who helped her change the lives of 50 children in Kulbhanga Pahar village by getting them responsible and regular teachers. She hopes more will join and support her cause to help the Pahariya community in Borna Pahar village.

Shikha Kumari Pahadin reports from Sahebganj district of Jharkhand for IndiaUnheard. 

This video was made by a Video Volunteers Community Correspondent Shikha Paharin. Community Correspondents come from marginalized communities in India and produce videos on unreported stories. These stories are ’news by those who live it.’ They give the hyper-local context to global human rights and development challenges. See more videos from Shikha here. Take action for a more just global media by sharing their videos and joining in their call for change.

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