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Abhiram Panigrahi

Sambalpur Integrated Development...
Joined September 2016
Interests: Community / Customary Land Rights, Education, Gender-based violence, Governance
Abhiram heads Sambalpur Integrated Development Institute, Sambalpur, Odisha, India since 1990. He led development and rollout of all projects of the organisation. Abhiram has 34 years of experience in leading multi-sectorial programmes in Health, Livelihoods, Child Rights, Education, tribal and minority development and Humanitarian Assistance. His earlier roles include, with PIPAR at Dhenkanal where he started his career as a community organiser, Training Faculty with SEARCH, Bangalore in-charge of Odisha, Maharastra and Madhyapradesh. But the urge for some meaningful interventions in the quest of social change in remote areas moved him from his involvement as a SEARCH Development Trainer as an activist to Jamankira tribal populated remote block of Sambalpur district. He started by synthesizing training inputs with actions in an attempt to make it organic. His concern and the approach pulled some local youths to form an organisation called Sambalpur Integrated Development Institute. The initial emphasis was on preparing the tribals, enabling them to participate in the political process so that they exercise control over the means of production
While working with community forest protection committees, community action groups, village development committees, and various gram sabhas, Abhiram focused on research and effective implementation of community-driven approaches towards realizing rights and entitlements. He worked with laws such as the Forest Rights Act, PESA, the Land Act, and Livelihood Program to further enable and support these organizations. Partnered with tribal organizations, individuals and associates to spearhead the campaign on Tribal Self Rule[Bhuria Committee Recommendations] and PESA in Schedule-V areas.
Abhiram holds a Masters in Political Science from Utkal University. He is committed to producing better results for these groups, whether community-based or state wide, by developing capacity, knowledge, and the pivotal realization of rights under existing laws.

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