Lab to Land Initiative of India Reaching Out to Rural Populace

By Atul K. Tiwary
Director (M & C), Press Information Bureau, New Delhi

New Delhi, April 27, 2011 (Washington Bangla Radio / PIB-India) Programs have a direct bearing on the well being of the rural community. A host of programs sponsored by Central Government and State Governments are being implemented in the field or rural development, agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries, watershed, forests and environment, health, education, nutrition, public distribution system, industries, development of women, children, ST/ST and physically challenged persons, rural electrification, management of land records and so on. . Most of these programs are being implemented under the supervision of District Collector and BDOs. In the implementation of these programs large number of stakeholders comprising Line Departments, NGOs and PRIs are involved. The achievement of the objectives of the program depends on the commitment and cooperation among the stakeholders and proper knowledge and understanding of the programs.

There is considerable scope to enhance effectiveness of the program by building leadership, disseminating knowledge and encouraging innovations. Taking a cue the Ministry Of Rural Development has embarked upon an ambitious Lab-to-Land initiative which aims to enhance the effectiveness of program implementation in rural areas through field level trainings of functionaries in collaboration with stakeholders.

Vision Of Lab to Land Initiative

· To build a knowledge & innovation community of all stakeholders in development including policy makers, implementers, financial institutions, academia, NGOs, experts and international organizations.

· To achieve a complete understanding among stakeholders for full achievement of all program objectives under implementation in rural areas – (employment, income, health, education, women, children, food security, agriculture, watershed, water, forests, electricity, roads, land records, etc.).

· To trigger a development process which ensures broad based improvement in the quality of life of people especially the poor, SCs/STs, OBCs, minorities and women.
· Focus on faster and more inclusive growth.

Thrust areas

· Governance : Transparency & Accountability

· Infrastructure: Power, Roads, Housing, ICT

· People’s Institutions: Gram Sabha, NGOs, JMFCs, Youth Clubs, CRPs

· Health : Access to Food, Immunization, Drinking Water ; IMR, MMR

· Education : Literacy & School Enrolment

· Safe Childhood

· Gender Empowerment

· Environment: Forest, Clean Air & Water, Sanitation

· Natural Resources : Land & Water Management

· Skill Development, Employment & Income

· Financial Inclusion & Bank Credit

· Marketing

Objective : Enhancing the effectiveness of Government Programmes

The Lab-to-Land initiative aims at organization of the stakeholders into a Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) that will work together for full achievement of the objectives of various Government programs being implemented in rural areas for sustainable and inclusive development. For this purpose in the initial phase of this initiative, one Block has been identified in each State. Stakeholders involved in the implementation of the programs in the Block will be identified and their interests and abilities will be mapped. A program will be drawn up to engage and involve all the stakeholders under the leadership of the District Collector at the district level and the BDO at the execution of the initiative will be constituted at State, District, Block levels including areas/objectives under various programs, actions required to achieve the desired results and indicators to measure performance. This will constitute the action plan under the initiative which will be taken up for implementation. The action plan will ultimately lead to building people’s institutions, improved management of natural resources, development of infrastructure and better marketing of rural products to ensure steady flow of rural income.

Pilot Project

Under the initiative, 43 districts have been identified from 28 states across the country wherein on a pilot basis the effectiveness of program implementation would be enhanced through field level training. The initiative aims to build a collaborative knowledge and innovation community and demonstrate full achievement of the objective of all schemes of the rural sector (Rural Development, Agriculture, Watershed, Environment, Income generation, Employment, Roads, Health, Education, Sanitation, Drinking water, Electrification, Food Security, Land records, Industries, Irrigation, Citizen’s charter, Grievance redressal mechanism etc.)

List districts/blocks identified for the pilot project is as follows:

S.No.

State

District

Block

1.

Andhra Pradesh

Rangareddy

Manchal

 

 

Warangal

Parvathagiri

2.

Arunachal Pradesh

Papumpare

Doimukh

3.

Assam

Kamrup

Dimuria

 

 

Marigaon

Marigaon

4.

Bihar

Patna

Maner

 

 

Vaishali

Hajipur

 

 

Nalanda

Biharsharief

 

 

Bhojpur

Koilwar

 

 

Begusarai

Barauni

 

 

Jehanabad

Jehanabad Sadr

5.

Chattisgarh

Dhamtari

Dhamtari

6.

Goa

North Goa

Pernam

7.

Gujarat

Sabarkantha

Prantij

 

 

Banaskantha

 

8.

Haryana

Karnal

Karnal

 

 

Mahendergarh

Mahendergarh

9.

Himachal Pradesh

Solan

Kandaghat

10.

Jammu & Kashmir

Jammu

Akhnoor

 

 

Laddakh

 

11.

Jharkhand

Dhanbad

BaliapurW

12.

Karnataka

Davangere

Harihar

13.

Kerala

Kollam

Sasthamcotta

14.

Madhya Pradesh

Jabalpur

Patan

 

 

Satna

Majhgavan

15.

Maharashtra

Wardha&Sangli

Deoli

16.

Manipur

Thoubal

Kakachin

17.

Meghalaya

Ribhoi

Umsning

18.

Mizoram

Kolasib

Thingdawl

19.

Nagaland

Kohima

JakhamaRD Block

20.

Odisha

Cuttack

Kantapada

 

 

Kandhmal

 

 

 

Keonjhar

 

 

 

Mayurbhanj

 

 

 

Gajapati

 

21.

Punjab

Fathehgarh Sahib

Kheri

22.

Rajasthan

Bhilwara

Sawana

23.

Sikkim

South District

Jorethang

24.

Tamil Nadu

Villupuram

Olakkur

25.

Tripura

West Tripura

Kathalia

26.

Uttar Pradesh

Chitrakoot

Mau

27.

Uttarakhand

Udhamsingh Nagar

Rudrapur

28.

West Bengal

Nadia

Shantipur

Training

In order to bring together different stakeholders to a common understanding and constitute the Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC), training programs will be conducted in the Block and the District by SIRDs. Stakeholders will be made aware of the availability of resources under various programs and the manner in which the resources can be optimally utilized in a collaborative fashion. Stress will be laid on enhancing the knowledge and program management skills of the elected Panchayati Raj representatives, Community Resource Persons, Self Help Groups and other peoples’ institutions like youth clubs, mahila mandals, user groups, watershed committees, JFMC, youth volunteers, etc., knowledge of latest innovations and best practices in program management will be shared with all the stakeholders. In particular, use of community radio will be promoted along with other media of communication such as wall newspapers, leaflets, pamphlets, magazines, radio, TV, folk songs, dance, drama, puppet, shows etc. to enhance program literacy among the people. Quizzes may be organized to enhance the knowledge and understanding of the community of the programs of the Government. Support from the various Media Units of the Ministry Of Information & Broadcasting including Regional Kendras of Doordarshan and AIR, Directorate of Field Publicity and Song and Drama Division would be solicited to extend the outreach.

Implementation

The action plan prepared under the Initiative will be implemented with available resources under various programs. Training programs will be completed in one block within a period of three to four months. On successful completion of the training program in three to four months, similar activities will be taken up in other blocks of the district by the District Administration. State may take another block in another district for undertaking this initiative. The achievements in the block may be showcased at different venues and it can be used as best practice model which can be customized in local context to take up Initiative in other blocks. In this manner, coverage of the implementation of the Initiative will progressively expand. It is expected that the outcome of the initiative will go a long way towards fulfilling the dreams of Gram Swaraj, as envisioned by the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi.

(PIB Features)