Halma is a Bhili tradition of coming together and helping a community member fighting his troubles. Whenever an individual from the community faces difficulty and calls for Halma, they all gather and solve it.  

“Halma- Let’s connect with an effective and outstanding developmental movement”

Shivganga initiated a water conservation movement on Halma’s concept. It’s team visited tribal villages with the message of Halma. The tribals from all around gathered to solve water scarcity problem on their call. It was later developed as an yearly event of coming & working together for rain water harvesting. Halma started off with 1500 volunteers in 2010, has grown to 15000 volunteers in 2018.

“About Shivganga- Their work and causes they stand for

Shivganga Samagra Gram Vikas Parishad, based in Jhabua, has been working on the holistic development of the tribal villages since last 17 years. The organization is an excellent example of development through community participation. Their development model for the village is “panchkoshiye vikaas”. The six main causes they work for are Jan(जन), Forest(जंगल), Water(जल), Land(जमीन), Animals(जानवर), Science(नवविज्ञान). They believe that we can lead to sustainable development by conserving and increasing all these components of nature. Their most of the interventions are inspired or based on the traditions and nature of the tribal community and witness large participation from the tribal people.

The Leadership and the people behind

Shivganga is run by Shri Harsh Chauhan, IIT Delhi, Batch 1983-84 and Shri Mahesh Sharma along with 14 other leaders from the tribal community itself. Apart from this, there is a team of volunteers from tribal communities with a reach in 800 tribal villages.

“Bhil- Brave bow men of India.”

The Jhabua and Alirajpur are most important districts of tribal belts of Central India. Jhabua district has a profound legacy of rich cultural heritage including social rituals, traditions, art & crafts and human values. There has been a systematic effort of neglecting, ignoring and even exploiting the innocent populations particularly during ‘British Raj’ which unfortunately continued even after independence. They have extreme reverence for mother nature. Their festivals and rituals are woven around worshipping ‘Matavan’ (mother forest from where they derive their livelihood), ‘Jalhan Devi’ (natural water resources), Jamimata (land where they cultivate crops). Jhabua and Alirajpur still preserve the natural diversity and tribals still live in harmony with the nature.


16th Feb, 2018 (Day 1): Orientation Workshop and Interaction with fellow Yatris at Indore.

17th Feb, 2018 (Day 2): Interaction with Social Leaders and people behind this movement. Traveling from Indore to Jhabua.

18th Feb, 2018 (Day 3): Witnessing a change movement, its organization and execution. Rural stays and local cuisine.

19th Feb, 2018 (Day 4): Reaching back to Indore in the afternoon.


Some of the amazing pictures from previous yatras.

Halma Yatra

Inviting for Halma

Halma Yatra

Getting ready for Halma

Halma Yatra

Shivganga Jal Abhiyaan

Halma Yatra

Heading for Halma

Halma Yatra

News story

Halma Yatra

Traditional silver ornaments

Halma Yatra

With Bow and Arrow

Halma Yatra

Bhil in Bhagoria

Halma Yatra

Paniye: The Local Cuisine

Halma Yatra

Preparing food for entire Halma

Halma Yatra

Listening, sharing and being one 

Halma Yatra

Interaction with Social Leaders

Halma Yatra

Yatris with local Rangili Pagdi

Halma Yatra

Yatris ready to participate in Halma 

Halma Yatra

IIM students with Shivganga Founders

Halma Yatra

Yatris doing Chhai-Chhappa-Chhai! 

Halma Yatra

Yatris going for local exploration

Halma Yatra

Bhil’s Home: They live at farms

Halma Yatra

A serene evening

Halma Yatra

Jhabua in spring

Some brilliant entrepreneurs, people from the best of colleges, best of organizations were part of the journey. It was networking of the next level. The best part was the journey pushed us out of our comfort zone, broke our monotonous life and inspired us to work harder.

– Angad Singi

Founder & CEO at Lithos Motors

Pune, Maharashtra

My ideas about empathy, importance of listening and the joy of connecting with others were reinforced throughout the Yatra. It created an awareness in me, about age-old traditions like Halma, and the power of such elements to present workable models of participative management for the administrative machinery.

– Sreemukh Kardas

IIT Kharagpur

New Delhi, Civil Service Aspirant

Throughout the program my connection with each person and empathy was something that I’ve never had before. From the point of a management student, all the discussions, interactions, questioning & observations will add to your learning.

– Lovesh Gouri

IIM Rohtak

Kurukshetra, Haryana

Experience something that you usually won’t in the warmth of your homes, in the books of your college and at the desk of your office. Being on Halma Yatra, I experienced the unison of thousands of people for the greater good of the environment. Ahead of its time, Shivganga’s work in the Jhabua district took me in awe. This is a cultural immersion you are waiting to be taken over by.

– Aishwarya

University of Edinburg

There is a lot of hard work, dedication, honesty in the members of Empathy Connects Yatras. Empathy Connects provided me a platform to explore myself and connect me with social entrepreneur and people who are doing good for society.

– Deepak Kumar

Founder & President at Pehal

Dhanbad, Jharkhand

Being a civil services aspirant, I was really excited about witnessing such a huge movement being organized. It has been a huge learning curve for me. It is said that a journey of thousand miles starts with a single step. I feel that this Halma Yatra with ‘Team Empathy Connects’ has been my first step.

– Prasanth Naidu

IIT Kharagpur, Civil Service Aspirant

New Delhi

Empathy Connects will let you discover the unknown, obscure places. The place and culture which you will not find in google. I got to know about more about rural India and how they are happily and sustain-ably fighting with their challenges. Yatra has broaden my perspective and knowledge. I will highly recommend this to the one who has inclination towards rural development and social change.

– Navneet Maheshwari

Sparc Fellow, Swaniti Initiative

Hisar, Haryana

It is just seemingly impossible to come out of the trip we went through. Such a learning exercise to know that how society as a whole can function in a much better way if we all unite to work towards a common motive with cooperation, coordination and discipline. Each Yatri possessed commendable experiences, a beautiful and innocent heart and smile on face.

– Mukul Kaushik

IIT Roorkee, ARB Trading

New Delhi

Empathy Connects
wherever we go!

Email: connect@empathyconnects.org

Call: +91 99307 48239

        +91 78957 94177

An initiative of Tathaastu Social Initiatives, a Society registered in Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh (India).