Pabitra Mandal

Pabitra Mandal

Work area : 24 Parganas district, West Bengal

Pabitra Mandal, along with his brother Taposh Mandal, co-founded Sundarban Jan Shramajibi Manch (SJSM) in 2004. Their mission was to champion the rights of individuals residing in the Sundarban region’s various islands. The local communities faced severe injustices during this time, particularly being denied the right to engage in fishing activities and access forest resources essential for their livelihoods and well-being.

SJSM became a catalyst for change by mobilizing the local population and advocating for Forest Rights, aiming to restore the connection between the people and their environment. They also focused on addressing gender disparities by promoting Women’s Rights and empowering women to participate actively in decision-making processes.

Labour Rights were another crucial aspect SJSM advocated for, striving to improve working conditions, wages, and overall well-being of workers in the Sundarbans. Recognizing the transformative power of education, SJSM worked to enhance educational opportunities and infrastructure for island communities, emphasizing skill development initiatives.

Moreover, SJSM aimed to uplift the economic conditions of the people by identifying and nurturing sustainable livelihood options such as eco-tourism, agriculture, and alternative income-generation activities. Their goal was to reduce dependency on limited resources and foster economic resilience.

Pabitra Mandal and SJSM emerged as a driving force for change, championing the rights of marginalized island communities in the Sundarbans. Their multifaceted approach encompassed Forest Rights, Women’s Rights, Labor Rights, Education, and Livelihood opportunities, all aimed at empowering the people and creating a more equitable, sustainable, and prosperous future for the inhabitants of the Sundarbans.

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