On 13th July, 2009on behalf of Atmashakti Trust Kokoji & Ruchi ji visited Odisha. At that time, Aadim Adiwasi Ekta Manch at Harbhanga Block of Boudh, Mati Maa Mahila  Morcha Daspalla Block of Nayagarh, Lok Mukti Sangthan & Sangram Samiti at Jharsuguda were already working on the issues of FRA, Minimum Wages, Women issues, Land Patta, Home Stead Patta, migration, displacement, human & wild life conflict and many other issues related to life and livelihood in only small areas like 4 GPs/5 GPs/ 15 GPs etc. 

On 17th July 2009, Koko ji and Ruchi ji had a round table discussion with the above mentioned sangathan leaders at Bhubaneshwar and concluded that working with sangathan’s working individually in small pockets will neither have any fruitful impact nor it will be able to bring about any change at the policy level. Hence, it was decided that the focus should be to cover the whole district where they are working and primarily start working on atleast two issues i.e. MGNREGA & Food Security. These two topics were selected because MGNREGA is an ACT andcovers multiple issues like, income of each HH, asset creation for the community, land development, stop migration etc. and it directly linksto food security challenges in tribal & backward areas of Odisha. 

Again, question arose that as we were only in 4 districts out of 30 districts; how we could challenge the policy especially when certain adjoining districts were more underdeveloped than our operational areas. Finally, it was decided to add the nearby districts like Kandhmal, Koraput, Gajapati, Malkangiri, Deogarh Sundargarh & Sambalpur. As a result, 10 people’s organisations (Sangathans) emerged in 10 districts of Odisha. The list is given below. -

  1. Aadim Adivasi Ekta Mancha - Boudh
  2. Mati Maa Mahila Morcha - Nayagarh   
  3. Jeebika Suraksha Manch - Kandhmal  
  4. Shramajeebi Ekta Aviyan - Gajapati     
  5. Lok Bikash Manch - Koraput   
  6. Shramajeebi Sangthan - Malkangiri 
  7. Sangram Samiti- Jharsuguda & Sundargarh    
  8. Lok Mukti Sangthan - Jharsuguda & Sambalpur
  9. Jan Kalyan Sangthan - Deogarh
  10. Jana Shakti Sangthan - Sambalpur.   

All the above sangathans are working on MGNREGA issue as the primary focal area. Although MGNREGA Act was implemented in Odisha in 2005 but till 2009 nobody was aware about anything at village level. There existed a huge gap between the Act andthe people. For dialogueand advocacy forfilling the gap, the need for a state level advocacy team was felt. 

There was a state level forum Odisha Jana Sangharsh Morcha (OJSM), before Atmashakti Trust started its intervention in Odisha. But due to some reasons OJSM had become un-operational. In one of the review meetings, it was decided to revive the sangathan (OJSM) under Mr. Pravat Kumar Sahoo acting as President of the sangathan.   Over a period, it was observed that the sangathan was not running smoothly and within a couple of months, it was decided to rename OJSM to Odisha Shramashakti Aviyan (OSSA). Some members of our team objected to that and mentioned that OSSA name sounds like a campaign. Consequently, 'ODISHA SHRAMAJEEBEE MANCH' (OSM) emerged on 25th November 2012.Some changes pertaining to working was introduced.  Some of the Sangathans like Nayagarh District Mati Maa Mahila Morcha withdrew its membership from OSM and Jeebika Suraksha Manch is now known as Mahila Jeebika Suraksha Manch. Likewise, Jana Kalyan Sangathan withdrew its membership and now there is no representation from Deogarh. Similarly, Sambalpur Jana Shakti Sangathan withdrew and Jana Sangharsh Samiti emerged.  Some new Sangathans from few new districtshave joined and are continuing with OSM. The details of those sangathan's are given below: -

Sl. No. Name of District Name of the Sangathan
1 Boudh Aadim Adivasi Ekta Mancha (AAEM)
2 Kandhmal Jeebika Suraksha Mancha (JSM) & Mahila Jeebika Suraksha Mancha(MJSM)
3 Nayagarh Jeebika Suraksha Mancha (JSM) & Mahila Jeebika Suraksha Mancha(MJSM)
4 Gajpati Shramjeebi Ekta Abhijan (SEA)
5 Koraput Lok Bikas Manch (LBM) & Mahila Lok Bikash Manch(MLBM)
6 Malkhangiri Shramjeebi Sangathan (SS) & Mahila Shramjeebi Sangathan(MSS)
7 Rayagada Jan Jagarana Mancha (JJM)
8 Jharsuguda Mahila Sangram Samiti (SS)
9 Sambalpur Lok Mukti Sangathan (LMS)
11 Sundargarh  Mahila Sangram Samiti (SS)
12 Sambalpur Jan Sangarsha Samiti (SS)
13 Nuapada Shramajeebi Bikash Manch
14 Kalahandi Nagarik Bikash Sangthan 
15 Balangir Lok Unnati Sangathan
16 Mayurbhanj Jana Jagruti Mancha

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