Banswara: UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Friday unveiled the National Rural Livelihood
Mission to reach out to BPL families through self-help groups and said the network of such groups comprising women will be strengthened.
Terming the NRLM as an ambitious programme of the UPA government, she said its effective implementation all over the country is important and women self-help groups can be
strengthened through the programme.
Unveiling the scheme in this predominantly tribal district, she said, "The country is rapidly progressing with a strong network of Panchayati Raj institutions due to strong
efforts of Rajiv Gandhi. These institutions have almost 10 lakh elected women representatives and the number of SHGs is also increasing with around 50 lakh self-help groups making
efforts to improve the condition of women in various states.
"These groups are boosting the confidence of women in rural areas and successfully running group activities like monitoring of primary health centres, social audit of various
government-run schemes and programmes, distribution of old age pension, procurement of wheat and rice," she said.
"To make them more effective, a new economic institution is going to be formed by the government and for that, the Finance Ministry has already fixed Rs 500 crore,"
she told a large gathering of tribals, mostly women, who braved blistering heat to be present at the function.
This tribal region of southern Rajasthan also took a leap forward with Gandhi laying the foundation of Dungarpur-Banswara-Ratlam rail line near Dungarpur Railway
The line will connect the tribal region of Banswara district with a rail line. The Rs 2100 crore project is scheduled to be completed within seven years.
Under the project, a 74 km long rail line will be laid and 127 km out of that will pass through Rajasthan, an NWR official said.
The state government has given Rs 1200 crore for the project which was a long pending demand of the tribal region.
It will connect the tribal region from other parts of
the country and also prove beneficial for upcoming power
project in the region, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot
At the function, Gandhi unveiled mission document and also handed over a loan approval document of Rs 1400 crore
from HUDCO to Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot to start a housing
project for 10-lakh BPL members in the state.
Under the state government project, 10-lakh houses for
BPL families would be built in the state in the next three
Gandhi noted that the government is in the final
stages of finalising the Food Security Bill to eliminate
malnutrition and poverty in the country.
Earlier, Gandhi, who arrived by a helicopter, visited
an exhibition where women of self help groups from Banswara,
Dungarpur, Udaipur and other tribal areas displayed their
products at five stalls.
She also interacted with groups of tribal women
working in self help groups.
Union Ministers Vilasrao Deshmukh, CP Joshi, Kumari
Selja, Mukul Wasnik, Sachin Pilot, Namoranrayan Joshi were
among those present at the function.
The NRLM is the restructured scheme of the existing
Swaranayanti Grameen Swarojgar Yojna and is an ambitious
programme of the UPA-II government for poverty alleviation in
rural areas. Its aim it to reach out to all rural poor
families through SHGs.
The scheme will enhance existing livelihood options
for the poor, building skills for job market, and nurture
self-employment. It will offer skill development to rural BPL
youths and also has provisions for tie up with private sector
for placement, livelihood services include financial and
capital services, production and productivity enhancement
services like technology, knowledge, skills and inputs.
The interested rural BPL youths would be offered skill
development after counselling and matching the aptitude with
the job requirements. Self employed and entrepreneurial
oriented poor would be provided skills and financial linkages
and nurtured to establish and grow with micro-enterprises
for products and services in demand.