Friday, March 16, 2012


Villagers stake ownership, deliver well
JAIPUR, 15 March: Nine journalists from Sikkim arrived here at the Pink City’s Bikaner House yesterday at around 2 a.m. after bad weather delayed the flight from Bagdogra to Delhi by over five hours. The journalists are a part of a ten-member exposure tour sponsored by the Press Bureau of India to better understand the implementation of various centrally sponsored schemes in Rajasthan.
The Press team from Sikkim, accompanied by members of the Jaipur PIB and local government officials, yesterday visited the panchayat Samiti of Bassi in Jaipur district where they interacted with the locals and officials on the implementation of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Guarantee Scheme.
Under MGNRGS, it was found that unlike Sikkim where the Bharat Nirman Rajeev Gandhi Sewa Kendras has not yet started, in the Jaipur district alone 39 such Kendras [in 39 gram panchayat units] have begun, offering the Rajasthan government with a good option to keep tabs on the implementation process.
These small but efficient structures are staffed by employees appointed by the panchayat member committees, are appointed with running water and toilet facilities, computers with internet, fans and electricity which is all generated by power from solar panels installed on the roofs. Villagers from each samiti can get access to their works, bills and follow up their payments from these Kendra’s.
These Kendras are mainly set in areas where a majority of population are Scheduled Caste.
Similarly, under NREGS works initiated in Bassi panchayat samiti, 106 works of different categories are under progress engaging 5,084 labourers. Community-based initiatives and public participation is the name of the game here with each family member employed in various works initiated in each panchayat samiti. One such example is the construction of a ‘Nala Nirman Hanuman Mandir to Samshan Ghat’ footpath project. Members of these Kendras are local heads and elders who have, through their Kendras, developed this project for which an estimated budget of Rs. 27 lakh was sanctioned which interestingly they completed at an expenditure of only Rs. 13.72 lakh, the remaining amount being then utilised to develop other small projects like drains to divert waste water and rain water.
Such is the involvement of the locals in these kendras which they have taken up  as their own ‘office’ from where they function for a better habitation, greatly reducing soil erosion and providing better living conditions to the residents and setting examples for the rest of the country to follow.
Later during the day, the journalists were taken to Kasturba Gandhi Balika Awasia Vidhalaya for girls. There are 200 such residential schools established all over Rajasthan with an average of 100 girls studying free and learning vocational skills along with pursuing education till standard VIII in each school.  The team also visited special education centres for disabled children where they interacted with the children sharing information about Sikkim. The team also visited the government horticulture farm in Dindol, Bassi Block, Jaipur, which is spread in an area of 222 hectares with state of the art farming of fruits, vegetables and flowers.

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