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Social Justice | 

Empowering the Raji Community

Raji woman returning from forest with a bundle of grass

Association for Rural Planning and Action (ARPAN) is a feminist rights-based organisation working with marginalised and indigenous communities. In partnership with RLS, ARPAN is working to empower the Van Raji community, a particularly vulnerable tribal group, in Uttarakhand, India. The Raji community is seen as an isolated community of forest dwellers with low literacy rates and scattered settlements. ARPAN has already conducted an in-depth survey of the community with the support of RLS to understand their lifestyle, livelihood patterns, political awareness, and demography.

Due to the invisibility of tribal voice and very small share of their population in the region, they are unable to influence the political agenda and the local administration officials to address their issues. ARPAN aims to generate awareness among the community and to facilitate formation of their collectives so that they can raise demands and assert their rights. Educational interventions like motivation, capacity building of youths on leadership, sensitization of community on issues of their concern will be carried out for advocating at different levels - village to district as well as state level.


The Association for Rural Planning and Action is a grassroots organisation based in Askot, District Pithoragrh, which lies at the trijunction of Nepal and Tibet with the Kali River separating its Eastern border with Nepal. It is committed to work with, amongst and for the excluded and marginalised sections of the society, placing the issue of women’s human rights in the centre of all its efforts.

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