It was a special day.The occasion was Janjatya Gaurav Diwas when Draupadi Murmu became the first President of India to visit Ulihatu in Khunti, Jharkhand which is the birth place of tribal hero Birsa Munda.
In Ulihatu, Union Minister for the Ministry of Tribal Affairs Shri Arjun Munda, welcomed the President of India Smt. Draupadi Murmu, in the esteemed presence of Governor of Jharkhand Sh Ramesh Bais, Chief Minister of Jharkhand Shri Hemant Soren, and MoS (Education) Smt. Annapurna Devi.
President along with other dignitaries also paid floral tributes on the statue of Bhagwan Birsa Munda. Shri Arjun Munda, presented the President of India Smt. Droupadi Murmu with a Pashmina Shawl from Ladakh and a Statue of Bhagwan Birsa Munda on her visit.
President Smt Droupadi Murmu also interacted with followers of Bhagwan Birsa Munda at Ulihatu. President also honored the relatives/descendants and Grandson, Sukhram Munda of Bhagwan Birsa Munda at Ulihatu today.
The President also addressed a Janjatiya Samagam in Shahdol, Madhya Pradesh today. Governor of Madhya Pradesh, Shri Mangubhai Patel, Chief Minister, Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan and Union Tribal Affairs Minister, Shri Arjun Munda were also present on the occasion.
Addressing the gathering, the President greeted the fellow citizens on the occasion of Janjatiya Gaurav Divas. She said that Madhya Pradesh has the largest tribal population in the country. Therefore, organising this Samagam in the state is appropriate.
The President said that the spirit of sacrificing everything in the interest of justice has been the speciality of the tribal society. In our freedom struggle, different ideologies and activities have played important role. The history of freedom struggle also includes several streams of struggles by the tribal communities. Many great personalities like Bhagwan Birsa Munda and Sidhu-Kanhu of Jharkhand, Tantia Bhil and Bhima Nayak of Madhya Pradesh, Alluri Sitarama Raju of Andhra Pradesh, Rani Gaidinliu of Manipur andSaheed Laxman Nayak of Odisha have enhanced tribal pride and also amplified the pride of the country. Many revolutionary warriors of Madhya Pradesh include Kishore Singh, Khajya Nayak, Rani Phool Kunwar, Sitaram Kanwar, Mahua Kol, Shankar Shah and Raghunath Shah. Revered as the 'Gandhi of Chhindwara', Shri Badal Bhoi had chosen the path of non-violence for the freedom struggle. The President paid her tributes to all such freedom fighters.
The President said that tribal communities have been instrumental in enriching the cultural heritage of Chambal, Malwa, Bundelkhand, Baghelkhand and Mahakoshal regions of Madhya Pradesh. She expressed confidence that this region, once full of prosperity during the reign of the tribal kings, will once again write impressive tales of modern development.
The President said that most of the tribal areas have been rich in forest and mineral wealth. Our tribal brothers and sisters live a life based on nature and respectfully protect nature. They had fought fiercely during the British rule to protect this natural wealth from exploitation. Conservation of forest wealth was, to a large extent, possible due to their sacrifices. In today's time, of climate change and global warming, everyone needs to learn from the lifestyle of tribal society and their determination towards forest conservation.
In his message, the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi has said that the nation is moving with the energy of ‘Panch Praan’ to realize the dreams of Bhagwan Birsa Munda and crores of Janjatiya bravehearts. “Expressing pride in the tribal heritage of the country through Janjatiya Gaurav Diwas and resolution for the development of the Adivasi community is part of that energy”, he said. The Prime Minister was greeting the nation on the occasion of Janjatiya Gaurav Diwas via a video message today.
The Prime Minister paid tributes to Bhagwan Birsa Munda and said 15th November is a day to celebrate Adivasi tradition as Bhagwan Birsa Munda was not just the hero of our freedom struggle but was a carrier of our spiritual and cultural energy.
The Prime MInister recalled the contribution of the tribal community in the freedom struggle and remembered key tribal movements and wars for Independence. He remembered Damin Sangram led by Tilak Manjhi, Larka movement under Budhu Bhagat, Sidhu-Kanhu Kranti, Tana Bhagat Movement, Vegda Bhil Movement, Naikda Movement, Sant Joriya Parmeshwar and Roop Singh Nayak, Limdi Dahod battle, Govind Guru ji of Mangarh and Rampa movement under Alluri Sitaram Raju.
The Prime Minister listed measures to acknowledge and celebrate the tribal contribution. he talked about the tribal museums in various parts of the country and schemes like Jan Dhan, Gobardhan, Van Dhan, Self-help Groups, Swachh Bharat, PM Awas Yojna, Matrutva Vandana Yojana, Gramin Sadak Yojan, Mobile connectivity, Eklavya Schools, MSP for up to 90 percent forest products, Sickle-cell Anemia, tribal research institutes, free corona vaccine, and Mission Indradhanush that have benefitted the tribal community a great deal.
The Prime Minister highlighted the valour, community life and inclusion of the Adivasi Samaj. “India has to give shape to its future by learning from this grand legacy. I am sure that Janjatiya Gaurav Diwas will become an opportunity and medium for this”, the Prime Minister concluded.
In another event, the Vice President & Chairman Rajya Sabha, Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar along with other Parliamentarians paid floral tributes to the legendary tribal freedom fighter, Shri Birsa Munda, at Parliament House premises today.
Shri Birsa Munda made an invaluable contribution to the freedom struggle by spearheading the tribal movement against the oppressive British rule and made tireless efforts to protect the rights of the tribals.
In the Janjatiya Samagam in Shahdol, Madhya Pradesh today Shri Arjun Munda said that the government has decided to celebrate the birth anniversary of Bhagwan Birsa Munda ji as Janjatiya Gaurav Divas. In the last eight years, the government is continuously making efforts for the development of the tribal society. Union Minister for tribal Affairs said that good work is going on for the implementation of the Forest Rights Act in the state as well as whole of the country. He said that it will be further strengthened so that the natural life of the tribals remains intact.
Speaking on the importance of PESA he said “PESA, 1996 is about aligning constitutional system with customary system and need is to further strengthen it.” He also remarked that the PESA law explains the basic principle of Swaraj. He said that in the field of education also Tribals should not be left behind and for this the work of further strengthening the Eklavya Model Residential Schools is going on with full enthusiasm. To celebrate JanJatiya Gaurav Divas 2022 in the spirit of Jan Bhagidari, an online ‘Best Essay’ Competition on the theme of ‘My Inspiration from Birsa Munda’ is being conducted by Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in coordination with MyGov. Citizens are invited to participate in Dress Up Your Kids as Birsa Munda, an online ‘Best Costume’ Competition on the theme of ‘Unsung Tribal Heroes’ is being conducted by Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in coordination with MyGov as a part of the JanJatiya Gaurav Divas 2022 celebrations.
This Competition series requires children to dress up as Birsa Munda and upload a photo on the MyGov platform. In this fancy dress competition, children of the age group of 2 to 10 years can participate. As a part of JanJatiya Gaurav Divas Celebrations, 2022, an online ‘Best Jingle’ Competition on the theme of ‘Philosophies of Birsa Munda’ is being conducted by Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in coordination with MyGov. Also an online Quiz Competition on the theme of ‘Tribal Freedom Fighters’ is being conducted by Ministry of Tribal Affairs, in coordination with MyGov.
Government of India has decided to celebrate November 15 as 'Janjatiya Gaurav Diwas' to mark the birth anniversary of Tribal Freedom Fighter "Birsa Munda" from year 2021 onwards, who was not only a freedom fighter but also social reformer and led tribal movement, namely Ulgulan (Revolt) against exploitative systems of British Colonial Govt. He is also known as Dharti Abba as he encouraged tribals to understand their cultural roots & observe unity.
Janjtiya Gaurav Diwas was celebrated with patriotic fervor throughout Scheduled Areas with festivities viz. several cultural programs, Swacchta Campaigns, tribal songs, dance, painting competitions.
It was celebrated with great fervour in Himachal Pradesh especially in Pangi region, where main attractions were Jhankis & processions of Fulyatra, Jokaru, showcasing traditional lifestyle, indigenous agricultural practices. Around 300 people participated in the event wearing traditional attires.In Lahaul-Spiti, the event organized in Schools of the Distt with debate, slogans, poster making competitions and cultural items as main attractions.