New Delhi: Union Minister of Rural Development, Panchayati Raj and Mines Shri Narendra Singh Tomar today reviewed status of various Rural Development programmes being implemented in Jammu and Kashmir. Shri Thomar said that MGNREGA has provided employment to 6.23 lakh households in FY 2016-17 with a substantial increase in the average number of person-days per household. Job cardholders in J & K had got around 51 days of wage labour, which has been increased from 36.4 days in FY 2014-15 to around 51 days in FY 2016-17. Jammu and Kashmir has also reported increase in total expenditure under MGNREGA and spent Rs. 842.10 core during FY 2016-17. Shri. Tomar said that during the current financial year, Central Government has released around 993.70 cores to J & K, which helped Government of J & K to provide 229.6 lakh person days of wage labour during FY 2017-18. Minister noted that in the current financial year MGNREGA funds are also used to create individual livelihoods assets like Vermi/NADEP Compost Tanks and community assets such as Aaganwadi Centres (AWC). Government of J & K has requested to consider construction of bunkers/shelters and snow cleaning as permissible activities under MGNREGA.
The Minister said that as per Socio Economic Caste Censes (SECC), Jammu and Kashmir has nearly 2.65 lakh households which are eligible for houses under the Pradhan Mantri AwasYojana (Gramin) scheme. Out of this, nearly 65,753 households are to be completed by March 2019. During FY 2017-18, J & K is required to complete a target of 21,752 houses. The Minister directed concerned officials to expedite the work under PMAY (G) and also asked department of RD & PR to upload the progress on Awaassoft on a regular basis. The Minister had also requested the state government to release matching grant and spend the unspent funds available under PMAY (G) and submit the proposal for the 2nd instalment of the special project for rehabilitating 3821 BPL families whose houses were completely damaged in floods. The Minister shared that NIRD & PR has been developing low cost, easy to replicate housing technology such as brick making. He advised J & K team to visit NIRD, Hyderabad and adopt the technology in the construction of PMAY (G) houses. Minister has also advised to involve SHG women in the production of material for house construction.
Under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, more than 8115 km of roads have been constructed and 1480 habitations have been provided all weather roadstill January 2018. Since 2014-15, the Ministry of Rural Development has released about Rs. 1979 crore as central share to Jammu and Kashmir. Out of which Rs. 1667 crore has been spent and works amounting to Rs. 5053 crore is ongoing in Jammu and Kashmir. The minister noted that as on date, 1155 works with a road length of 6673.4 Kms are pending. He asked to expedite the work and ensure connectivity of remote villages on a priority basis. The Government informed that for phase X projects, compensation for acquiring forest and land for construction of roads require around Rs. 800 crores. PWD department officials informed that the work will be started once the land acquisition is completed.
Under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana- National Rural Livelihoods Mission, since 2014-15, more than 19000 Self Help Groups (SHGs) have been promoted in J & K. These SHGs have been provided a capitalization support of Rs. 68.6 crore from the Mission. The Government is also facilitating women SHGs to access bank credit. Due to the efforts made by the Mission, SHGs accessing bank linkage has doubled from 1831 SHGs in 2014-15 to 4158 SHGs in FY 2017-18 (Jan’18). In order to promote self-employment, MORD had launched Start Up Village Entrepreneurship Programme (SVEP) to support rural entrepreneurs. SVEP has been initiated in two blocks Basholi (Kathua district) and Lar (Ganderbal district). Under SVEP, an amount of Rs. 2.09 crores have been released against the proposed outlay of Rs. 9.31 crore
As part of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s development package for reconstruction of J&K, 1 lakh youth are to be trained on wage employment under the Himayat scheme during 2016-2019. Sh. Tomar informed that his ministry has approved an action plan of skilling 1.24 lakh youth (additional 24000 youth to be trained from the existing targets) during 2016-19 at an estimated cost of Rs. 1581 crore. The central government has been providing necessary funds to meet the targets. The Himayat Project Mission Director, informed that nearly 8000 youth have already been trained while 1091 are currently undergoing training. Multiple projects have been sanctioned by the State Level Project Review Committee (SLPRC) in the recent past and it is expected that the number of youth trained will increase exponentially in the near future. The Minister noted that the State Government need to expedite sanction and release of funds for the projects approved by the SLPRC on 13th September, 2017.Under the RSETI programme, nearly 15000 candidates have been trained during FY 2016-17 and 2017-18. The officials informed that about 9500 candidates have been settled under the scheme from April 2016 till Jan 2018.
Under the National Social Assistance Programme, nearly 1.4 lakh persons availed benefit under the old age pension scheme in 2016-17, 8334 women were covered under the Widow Pension scheme, about 2800 persons under the Disability pension scheme while 392 families received assistance under the National Family Bereavement Scheme.The total expenditure reported for the year 2016-17 was nearly Rs. 49.5crores against releases amounting to Rs. 45.7crores. The minister emphasised that the State government should strive for 100% Aadhar seeding and 100% Aadhar Based Payment (ABP) to NSAP beneficiaries. The Minister advised to conduct gram sabhas for inclusion of any left-out families in the SECC and send list of families to be added in the SECC data latest by 31st March 2018.
In the meeting Shri. Abdul Haq Khan, Minister for Rural Development & Panchayati Raj and Law & Justice, Government of Jammu and Kashmir and senior officials from Department of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj had participated. Shri. Khan informed that his department has been focusing on rural livelihoods, sustainable agriculture,wage employment, skill development, creating infrastructure under MGNREGA in rural areas. He assured that his department will take necessary steps to expedite development activities and use the central assistance for development of Jammu and Kashmir. Shri. Khan reiterated that his department will ensure implementation of all the development activities as per the vision of Hon’ble PM, Hon’ble Chief Minister, J & K and Minister, Rural Development. Shri Khan also thanked Shri. Tomar for supporting various development programmes in Jammu and Kashmir.