Cabinet okays declaration of Birsa Munda's birth anniversary on Nov 15 as Janjatiya Gaurav Divas

The decision has been taken with a view to honour the special place and contributions of tribes in Indian history and culture

November 10, 2021 05:30 pm | Updated 07:24 pm IST - New Delhi

Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting Anurag Singh Thakur during the cabinet briefing at NMC, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2021.

Union Minister for Information & Broadcasting Anurag Singh Thakur during the cabinet briefing at NMC, in New Delhi, Wednesday, Nov. 10, 2021.

As a part of the year-long commemoration of 75 years of Independence, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved declaration of November 15 as “Janjatiya Gaurav Divas” to remember the contributions of tribal freedom fighters.

Announcing the decision, Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur said the date was chosen as it was the birth anniversary of Birsa Munda, a tribal freedom fighter revered as “bhagwan” by tribal communities. The celebrations would begin on November 15, and events, including cultural activities, would go on till November 22.

In a statement, the government said the Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved the proposal “so that coming generations could know about their [tribal freedom fighters] sacrifices about the country.”

Tribal heroes

“India’s freedom struggle was strengthened by several movements by tribal communities such as Santhals, Tamars, Kols, Bhils, Khasis and Mizos to name a few. The revolutionary movements and struggles organised by the tribal communities were marked by their immense courage and supreme sacrifice…However, the public at large is not much aware about these tribal heroes,” the statement read.

This year, activities meant to showcase the achievements of tribals and welfare measures by the government for education, health, livelihood etc had been planned, it stated.

Tribal freedom fighter museum

A tribal freedom fighter museum at Ranchi would be inaugurated by the Prime Minister, it said.

In his Independence Day speech in 2016, Mr. Modi announced the setting up of 10 such tribal museums in the country.

“The declaration acknowledges the glorious history and cultural heritage of tribal communities. The day will be celebrated every year and would recognise the efforts of the tribals for preservation of cultural heritage and promotion of Indian values of valour, hospitality and national pride,” the statement read.

BJP’s outreach event

Mr. Modi is scheduled to address a BJP tribal outreach event in Bhopal on November 15, which will mark Birsa Munda’s birth anniversary, celebrate tribal art and culture and is likely to include announcements of welfare measures for tribal communities, according to Madhya Pradesh BJP leaders.

On Twitter, BJP Scheduled Tribes Morcha president and Rajya Sabha member Samir Oraon thanked Mr. Modi for the Cabinet decision and shared a photo of a lamp being lit in front of Birsa Munda’s image at the party headquarters.

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