This report on Planning Commission site by Research and Development Initiatives presents the findings of a study that aimed at evaluating/examining the government run rural development programmes for community development implemented in the country by:
- Documenting best practices in rural planning and implementation.
- Suggesting ways and developing systems for replication of these good practices at a larger level
In the post independent era, Government of India committed itself to bringing about a rapid and sustainable development in rural India through various programmes. Over the years, the thrust of the rural development programmes have been on the all-round economic and social transformation of rural areas, through a multipronged strategy, aimed at reaching out to the most disadvantaged sections of the society.
In the past five decades and more, many rural development programmes have been launched. The aim of these programmes have been to cover all the facets of rural life such as agriculture, animal husbandry, roads (communication facilities), health, education, housing, employment and nutrition. Accordingly, all the programmes since independence have covered one facet or the other for improving the life of three- fourths of the Indians who live in the villages.
The government-pioneered projects from time to time have changed in approach and strategy. These shifts in the policy decisions have been taken on the basis of experiences from existing programmes and to reach out to the last person in the last row. However, it has been realised that most of the policy decisions have been taken with a macro perspective and a very little attention has been paid to the micro level issues.
Although it has been well known that many of these projects have been successful at the microlevel, very little documentation exists on the microlevel implementation of the rural development programmes. This study thus planned to document best practices at the microlevel implementation of the rural developemnt programmes in selected projects from selected states in India.
In consultation with the Planning Commission of India, the states of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh were selected for the study. It was agreed upon to document two success projects in each of the study states. These success stories were selected on the following criteria:
- The success should reflect the impact of different projects.
- The project should be in operation for more than 5 years
Based on the agreed upon criteria the following projects were selected to be documented. 1. Wasteland Development Project – Ajmer 2. Community lift Irrigation Project – Bhilwara 3. Tannery – Luchnow 4. Boond Bachat Sanghtan - Kanpur.
The study was exploratory in nature. The instruments of enquiry were kept open ended to gather qualitative inputs from the programme functionaries and the beneficiaries. The study was carried out in two districts in the States of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. In each district, one project was documented. In all, 4 projects were documented and five villages were covered in each of these project districts to assess the extent of benefit accrued to the beneficiaries. This report describes the findings of the evaluation of the four projects in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh
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