Govt to develop villages with people's participation: Javadekar

Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar said the government is working to ensure that tribals also get at least the Minimum Support Price for forest produce.

Borpani: Hitting out at the previous Congress-led UPA government, Environment Minister Prakash Javadekar on Thursday claimed it followed a "dole-based" approach while the Modi government's development model is for bringing "real" change on the ground especially in villages through people's participation.

"The policies of the previous government encouraged a mindset that the people should do nothing and remain dependent on the government for everything. All people should do is vote every five years, was the attitude. And as a result of this approach, development work was not getting carried out on the ground," Javadekar said in a public meeting here in Chhindwara.

The present government, he claimed, was following a policy of empowerment through people's participation.

The government, he added, believes that it is most important to develop villages and will walk the extra mile for it. But participation of people is also vital he emphasised.

People of the villages should develop villages, he stressed.

Addressing the gathering where majority of those present were tribals, Javadekar said that his ministry too had adopted such a policy for development and conservation of forests.

The government, he said, was encouraged by the results of a UNDP supported scheme, in which tribal families plant bamboo in forest areas and then earn from its produce. This was helping help in protection of forest cover while also providing earning to local families.

He said some of the families which had planted bamboo, had earned upto Rs 17,000 last year and it would be more this year. Many of them now don't have to leave their homes to earn, he added.

"There cannot be development of forests without participation of the people," Javadekar said.

He said the government is working to ensure that tribals also get at least the Minimum Support Price for forest produce.

The minister also said that there are plans to develop an eco-tourism spot in the Chhindwara region, which would help in generating income for local families.

He said the focus of the government is to impart skills and not just education. For employment, skills are very important, the minister added.  

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