Indian Villages
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How Modi wants to make Indian Villages Smart

India has around six lakh villages and 23,8,617 Gram Panchayats. It would take huge amount of resources if Modi government were to develop all these villages. Instead a strategy is devised in which some villages should be developed as model villages through community participation and remaining villages should be encouraged to emulate them in a competitive spirit.

The scheme is inspired by ideals of Mahatma Gandhi whose concept of rural development revolves around creating model villages for transforming ‘swaraj’ (self rule) into ‘su-raj’ (good governance). As part of the scheme, the villagers will prepare their own development plan, activities and fix targets for achievement. It seeks to not only provide physical infrastructure and access to basic amenities but also improve the standard of living, enrich social capital and build community spirit.

What SAGY will do?

Under Sansad Adarsh Gram YoJana (SAGY), each Member of Parliament (MP) would adopt a village (Gram Panchayat) and develop it as an Adarsh Gram (Model Village) by 2016. Two more such villages Vii would be developed by 2019, and after that one village every year till 2014.

Gram panchayat would be the basic unit for of development. It will have a population of 3,000-5,000 in plain areas and 1,000-3,000 in hilly, tribal and difficult areas. Lok Sabha MP has to choose a Gram Panchayat from within his/her constituency and Rajya Sabha MP, a Gram Panchayat from the rural area of a district of his/her choice in the state from in which he/she is elected. Nominated MPs may choose in a Gram Panchayat from the rural area of any district in the country. In the case of urban constituencies (where there are no Gram Panchayats such as Delhi), the MP will identify a Gram Panchayat from a nearby in rural constituency. Total number of MPs is 793 (Lok Sabha 543+ Rajya Sabha 250, 12 of which are nominated). So, if each MP adopts three villages, the scheme will be vii able to develop 2,379, Gram panchayats by 2019.

Thus, we would be able to create some model villages, which other villages can admire and implement in he their own village (Peer pressure and competition are the best way to achieve results).

Model village

If we draw a mental picture of how a ‘model village’ under Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) would look like then we see that the village will have it all -’smart schools’, universal access to basic health facilities, pucca houses for the homeless, universal PDS for eligible families, e-governance and Aadhaar cards for all.

Pulling every household out of poverty would be the main thrust area of the scheme. Other than pucca houses for all, ensuring toilets in each household, supply of piped drinking water, all weather connectivity to the main road, electricity connection to all households, village libraries, telecom and broadband connectivity as well as CCTVs in public places would. Education be the focus area.

The MPs will also directly support activities at village level like health camps, organising grievance redressal camps, community mobilisation etc. Unlike in other schemes, attention would be given to social issues as well. For instance, reducing risk behaviours like alcoholism, smoking, substance abuse (drugs/tobacco/gutka etc) among all age groups of population. Grassroot democracy would be strengthened through strong and transparent Gram panchayats and active Gram Sabhas. Women participation in the decision-making i process will be encouraged. E-governance and e-literacy will also be given a push. Smart schools and e -libraries would be created.

Values such as respect for women, martyrs and elders, good hygiene, respect for the environment, good reading habits etc would be inculcated in our young generation. Quality health care would be ensured in these villages with an aim of 100 per cent immunization, 100 per cent institutional delivery, and reduction in Infant Mortality Rate (IMR), Maternal Mortality Rate (MMR) and reduced malnutrition among children.

Technology would be, leveraged effectively to make this programme successful, e.g. use of space application and remote sensing for planning, mobile based technology for monitoring, agriculture technology for increasing productivity etc.

Skill Development Initiatives

Charting a new future for Youth with Skill Development

  • Placement-linked skill training initiative aiming for rural poverty alleviation
  • Government support for skilling courses ranging from Rs. 25,696 per candidate to Rs 1,22,362
  • 724 on-going skill training projects in IV nearly 1,100 approved training centers across 21 states impacting youth from 568 districts
  • Over 3.56 lakh youth trained, and over s’ 1.88 lakh placed in jobs
  • Over 19.65 lakh youth trained for various g skill development courses
  • Loans ranging from Rs. 5,000-1.5 lakhs will be made available to 34 lakh youth

To encourage good performance, four kinds of awards have also been instituted in the following categories:

  1. Best practices
  2. Best In-Charge Officers
  3. Best District Collectors
  4. Best Adarsh Grams

Performance of SAGY so far

So far two phases of SAGY have been launched. Phase -I was launched in 2014 and seemed quite, successful with 702 MPs identifying villages for development. But this momentum seems to have fizzled out in second phase of SAGY with only 117 MPs identifying the villages so far (as on 11 August, 2016).

Below, we have tried to explain the reasons for this lukewarm response to phase -II of SAGY.

  1. MPs have complained about scarcity of funds to carry out the development.
  2. Government had expected that funds from corporate, voluntary and private sectors would also be available for SAGY, but situation has not been very encouraging on this front.
  3. SAGY envisages synergy and convergence of various development schemes. This is a tough task.
  4. Another problem is related to the selection of the village. Guidelines provide that an MP can select any village except his own village or his I spouse’s village.
  5. Some MPs whose constituency is in urban area (e.g. Delhi) have to select a village from some other rural constituency.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyan

  • Creating a clean India to pay the perfect tribute to Mahatma Gandhi
  • Since the launch of the Swachh Bharat
  • Mission on 2nd October 2014, a change in mindsets is happening across the country
  • 1.92 crore toilets have already been constructed & 14 districts, 190 blocks, 23,790 Gram Panchayats and 56,206 villages have declared themselves as Open Defecation Free Rural Sanitation coverage has increased from 42% to 52% in 2 years
  • Swachh Bharat Swachh Vidyalaya aimed to provide separate toilets for girls and boys in all schools of the country within one year; achieved remarkable success.

Conclusion

Aim of Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY), was clear from the beginning- ‘do-it-yourself rather than rely excessively on the government.’ In doing so, current government has attempted to break away from the past tradition of seeing the government’s role as benefactor and public as mute beneficiary. Rather, this model is based on the development with community participation. Hence everything needs to be done to make this scheme a success. Read mmore news on Narendra Modi.

Author – This article is written by Aditya Johari from www.vagupu.com

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How Modi wants to make Indian Villages Smart
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