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Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY)

Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY)

Introduction

  • Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY) is a village development project under which each Member of Parliament (MP) owned the responsibility to develop the institutional and physical infrastructure in three villages by 2019. The scheme aims to develop five ‘Adarsh Villages’ or ‘Model Villages’ by 2024.

Objectives          

  • To trigger processes which lead to holistic development of the identified Gram Panchayats.
  • To substantially improve the standard of living and quality of life of all sections of the population through:
    • Access to rights and entitlements
    • Higher productivity
    • Enriched social capital
    • Improved basic amenities
    • Enhanced human development
    • Reduced disparities
    • Better livelihood opportunities
    • Wider social mobilization
  • To nurture the identified Adarsh Grams as schools of local development to train other Gram Panchayats.
  • To generate models of local level development and effective local governance which can motivate and inspire neighbouring Gram Panchayats to learn and adapt

Salient features | Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY)

  • It aimed to develop three Adarsh Grams by March 2019, of which one was to be achieved by 2016. Thereafter, five such Adarsh Grams (one per year) will be selected and developed by 2024.
  • Funding: No new funds have been allocated for the Yojana. Resources may be raised through: o Funds from existing schemes, such as Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, MGNREGA, etc.
    • Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS),
    • Gram panchayat own revenue,
    • Central and State Finance Commission Grants, and
    • Corporate Social Responsibility funds.
  • Identification of villages: MPs can select any gram panchayat, other than their own village or that of their spouse, to be developed as an Adarsh Gram. The village must have a population of 3000-5000 people if it is located in the plains, or 1000-3000 people if located in hilly areas. o Lok Sabha MPs can choose a village from their constituency, and Rajya Sabha MPs from the state from which they are elected.
    • Nominated members can choose a village from any district of the country.
    • MPs which represent urban constituencies can identify a village from a neighbouring rural constituency.
  • The ‘Model Village’ concept aims to address various challenges (such as health, education, livelihood etc.) comprehensively with adequate focus on the special needs of every village. This earlier was being done only through separate flagship schemes targeting different sectors such as health (NRHM), education (SSA), and livelihood (MNREGA, NRLM).
  • Planning and Implementation: Gram Panchayats adopted under SAGY prepare Village Development Plans (VDP) through a participatory process under the guidance of Members of Parliament. The VDP includes prioritised time-bound activities to achieve holistic progress of the village. o District Collector will be the nodal officer for implementing the SAGY. He will conduct a monthly review meeting with representatives of the participating Line Departments. Members of Parliament concerned will chair the review meetings.
    • Ministry of Rural Development will be nodal Ministry coordinating and monitoring the Scheme closely to ensure its efficient implementation.
    • To encourage better performance, four kinds of awards have been instituted: Best Adarsh Grams, Best Charge Officers, Best District Collectors, Best Practices.

Implementation

  • The scheme will be implemented through a village development plan that would be prepared for every identified gram panchayat with special focus on enabling every poor household to come out of poverty.
  • The constituency fund, MPLADS, would be available to fill critical financing gaps.
  • The planning process in each village will be a participatory exercise coordinated by the District Collector. The MP will play an active facilitating role in this exercise.
  • Adoption and adaptation of technology and introduction of innovations are critical to this programme. This will include use of space application and remote sensing for planning, mobile based technology for monitoring, agriculture technology for increasing productivity etc.
  • At the state level there will be an Empowered Committee headed by the Chief Secretary consisting of the relevant Departments and including experts, as required with at least two Civil Society representatives.
  • The district Collector will be the nodal officer for implementing the SAGY. He will conduct a monthly review meeting with representatives of the participating Line Departments. The Members of Parliament concerned will chair the review meetings.
  • SAGY gives focus to community participation. Social mobilization of village community can trigger a chain of other development activities in the village.

Challenges to the scheme | Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana (SAGY)

  • Implementation: While the SAGY talks about convergence and effective utilisation of available Central and state schemes, most MPs raise the point that it is extremely difficult to know about the provisions under each scheme and the structure and framework for its implementation on the ground.
  • Monitoring: The biggest challenge is difficult for MPs to monitor the on-ground development on a regular basis, in the absence of a platform where they can oversee the progress on different interventions.
  • Coordination: Activities under SAGY are so diverse that close coordination and convergence will be required across different ministries, departments, schemes of the Government of India, MPLADS, state government and the private sector to implement the scheme successfully. The coordination is the biggest challenge.
  • Fund scarcity: The biggest challenge in SAGY is the lack of any specific fund allocation for the programme. Sarpanch are not able to get any work initiated because of lack of funds. They claimed that funds may have been held up by other authorities, or possibly that the MP was blocked from releasing funds by the government, and may have thus precluded any development in earnest.
  • Political will: Some MPs whose constituency is in an urban area (e.g. Delhi) have to select a village from some other rural constituency. They are often unwilling to do so because, then they will have to spend their MPLAD funds outside their constituency which won’t bring any political benefits for them.
  • Village selection: 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 spouse’s village. This puts MPs in dilemma. If they select a village, then voters from other villages may question the move.

 

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