In a first, 10 Odisha villages eradicate untouchability

10 Odisha villages declare their habitats untouchability-free
As a tribute to Mahatma Gandhi, 10 villages in seven panchayats in the Daringbadi block of Odisha’s Kandhamal district on Tuesday declared their habitats untouchability-free. In the gramsabha meetings of the seven panchayats held on Tuesday, resolutions relating to complete eradication of untouchability by pallisabha (smaller village or hamlet councils) in these 10 villages were approved. The villages are: Sundardanda of Pliheri panchayat, Sripanka of Daringbadi panchayat, Ganadkamba and Sikaketi of Badabanga panchayat, Padanketa of Danekbadi panchayat, Sanagudumaha, Sikapata and Jidingmala of Greenbadi panchayat, Budanpipali of Bhramarbadi panchayat, and Penapusi of Sinagabali panchayat. This path-breaking decision could be taken up by these villages, inhabited mostly by tribals and Scheduled Castes, due to a month-long effort by social organisations Jagruti and Antaranga, of Kandhamal. “In August, we decided to end this division among the tribals and Scheduled Castes and started approaching leaders and seniors of several villages in Daringbadi block. “Ten villages took up the proposal seriously and started working on it,” said Kailash Dandapat of Jagruti, a social organisation. He hoped that motivated by these 10 villages, other villages of Daringbadi block will also end untouchability in their villages soon.
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