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Twenty-Five Years of Community Transformation in Jamshedpur, India

Monday, 10. November 2003

Villagers tell how their lives and communities have been transformed as a result of local IofC initiatives.

Prabhat Kumar, the State Governor of Bihar, Shri Gopeshwar, a prominent national trade union leader and 120 others took part in the Silver Jubilee of Initiatives of Change (formerly MRA), in the industrial city of Jamshedpur, in October. For 25 years, IofC has held weekly meetings in the city.

The meeting heard from villagers whose lives and communities have been transformed as a result of local IofC initiatives. One nearby village has abandoned illicit liquor brewing, and is now developing aquaculture. Another started a school, and two of its graduates are now teaching at the school, having refused more lucrative offers. After hearing some of these experiences, Mr Kumar urged the villagers to document this 'silent revolution'.

Jamshedpur is the home of India's largest trade union, the Tata Workers' Union with 26,000 members. Most of the union office bearers have just attended a three-day programme at the MRA/IofC centre at Asia Plateau in Panchgani, Maharashtra. At a meeting chaired by the union President, the Vice-President told of the change in his own life that had resulted from the programme, and of the effect on his family.