Tired of promises by politicians to construct a road from their village to Koderma town, residents constructed an eight kilometre kutcha road themselves with voluntary labour, which changed their lives dramatically for the better.
Situated in a dense forest, the villagers of Simerkundi had difficulty in going to the town and even fetching drinking water before the road was built.
"After the tall claims by politicians remained unfulfilled, we decided to construct a road on our own in September last year," said Ramesh Murumu, who heads the village's forest development committee.
After the construction of the road, the villagers received encouragement and assistance from the district forest officer, Sidharth Tripathy, which changed the economic condition of the village.
"Under the National Rural Employment Guarantee act, the forest department helped the villager dig a well to solve the drinking water problem," Tripathy said.
Tripathy also helped the villagers to form a 'chetna samiti' to protect the forest cover and prevent theft of timber, besides a 'grain bank'.
The grain bank has a capacity to store five quintals. In time of need, residents borrow grains and return it with an additional quantity of grain as interest, Tripathy said.
"The grain bank, managed by women, has stopped them from borrowing grains from money-lenders," he said.