What Independence Means To A Tribal Community Who Has Lived in Darkness for 72 Years

Navsacha Pada in Goregaon experienced electricity for the first time after 72 years and the whole experience can be labelled as liberating


What's the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about Mumbai? Towers soaring up the sky and brightly lit spaces. But the fact that one place in this city doesn’t know what it means to have electricity in one’s home seems unfathomable.

Even after 72 years of Independence, Nausacha Pada in Goreagon which houses hundreds of people from the Adivasi community will now experience Independence in its true sense. After living in darkness for 72 years they have finally known what it is to live with access to electricity. 

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Nausacha Pada was denied from electricity as the land belonged to Bombay Veterinary College and they did not provide a NOC for the same. The community protested on May 28, 2019 against the college. The dean had assured his presence but did not turn up on the day of the protest. We told them that if electricity wasn't provided within 2 days, they will be held under the Atrocity Act. Being threatened by the same the NOC was provided on June 1. That day was nothing less than a celebration for the community people. They held an entire grand procession with the NOC even when the electricity was yet to come.  -Prakash Bhoir 

They finally switched on their light in the month of July. One of the community members recollects how he had to wait till he reaches office to charge his phone. 

Nausacha Pada led its way from the darkness towards light but even today there are several such tribal hamlets battling with the same issue. Nausacha Pada was one of the 27 tribal hamlets in Aarey which did not have access to electricity. With the battle won, the war is yet to be conquered. 

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