Narayani Bhil

Narayani Bhil

Work area : Chittorgarh district, Rajasthan

Narayani was born to a family – Bhil adivasis, who were exploited and extremely vulnerable in this region of Rajasthan. She never had the opportunity to attend school or gain any formal education. She worked as a daily wage labourer, even as a young girl. Having faced several social and physical violence, she received support from the sangathan and Khemraj bhai (veteran activist, now deceased), who also mentored her. Soon she became an integral member of the sangathan.

What made her stand apart from other women was her boldness, and her ability to learn fast. As a volunteer, she attended SSC training shivirs organised by SRUTI which made her question the social norms and customs which were then the axis of her life. It allowed her to change her views and she understood that these norms and customs are mere inventions of a patriarchal and caste society.

She has fearlessly fought against the atrocities on marginalised communities and women, and taken on land mafia from dominant communities. She led a campaign against land encroachment by the upper caste and took many cases to the courts, thus ensuring justice was served to many unprivileged families. Her leadership qualities enabled her to gain the support of women from nearby villages, making them aware of their rights. Narayani encourages women to raise their voices against any kind of violence or social discrimination meted out to them and take active support of police and courts in such matters.

She is very active in dealing with issues related to pension, MGNREGA, and other welfare schemes. She has been working to improve socio-economic conditions in the villages – addressing issues related to water supply, electricity, and farming practices, and works to involve the administration in getting attention to these issues.

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