Uncertainty hangs over the project, with locals vowing not to let a single coal-laden truck leave the mines until the displaced families are rehabilitated.
The former chief minister who hails from tribal in a letter to then Indian premier said,' not only is the company involved in exploitation of natural resources illegally, it is also doing injustice to the tribal people of the area and is grossly violating environmental norms.'.(1) The former chief minister claimed that Panem Coal Mines Limited extracting coal in excess from its allotted coal mine in Pakur district of Jharkhand. He termed the action of the company as 'theft' that was continuing for the last six years.
Catholic nun Valsa John (52), who was involved in a movement against displacement of tribal people by coal mining companies in Jharkhand, was shot dead in November 2011 . She was a member of the Rajmahal Pahar Bachao Andolan. The murder happened at Bachuwari village of Pakur district, The police suspect the coal mafia to be behind it. In the immediate context, she had been protesting against the functioning of a private coal mine in Pakur district. She was staying in Bachwari for the last 12 years, all by herself. She was seeking to protect the interests of the Santhal tribe, some members of which were displaced by the Panem Coal Mines.(3)
Punjab State Electricity Board Government of Jharkhand
Environmental justice organisations and other supporters
Rajmahal Pahar Bachao Samiti, Jharkhand Vikas Morcha Prajatantric-JVM) chief Babulal Marandi, Jharkhand Congress Party
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)
HIGH (widespread, mass mobilization, violence, arrests, etc...)
When did the mobilization begin
In REACTION to the implementation (during construction or operation)
Indigenous groups or traditional communities Local government/political parties Neighbours/citizens/communities Women Ethnically/racially discriminated groups Santhal adivasi
Forms of Mobilization
Blockades Street protest/marches Strikes
Potential: Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Groundwater pollution or depletion
Potential: Displacement, Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood
Pathways for conflict outcome / response
Compensation Deaths Under negotiation
Development of Alternatives
Fair rehabilitation through compensation and public services.
Do you consider this as a success?
Why? Explain briefly.
The decision to end the strike was arrived at a meeting organised by Santhal Pargana district commissioner with Panem Coal Mines chairman and managing director along with representatives from different political leaders and Rajmahal Pahari Bachao Andolan Samiti. Assurance has given to start a plus-two school and a hospital within next six months. The mines authority has also assured to provide irrigation facilities to the farmers in the affected area, besides electricity, employment and adequate compensation for land acquisition. (2)
Sources and Materials
(1) Jharkhand former CM wants inquiry against Panem Coal Mines [click to view]
(2) Down to Earth, 'Panem agrees to honour promises made to tribal people' [click to view]
NDTV, '20 days on, Jharkhands Panem mine remains locked by protest' [click to view]
'Marandi’s protest continues, to block Coal-rakes in Pakur' [click to view]
(3) The real truth (Countercurrents, 27 Nov 2011) (on the killing of Sister Valsa John) [click to view]