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Sikkim bags 3 national awards at MG-NREGA Sammelan

Last Updated: Friday, February 4, 2011 - 18:45

Gangto: Sikkim has become the only state to
bag national award in all three categories for exemplary work
done under MG-NREGA during the recent Mahatma Gandhi NREGA
Sammelan in New Delhi.

The sammelan was held to commemorate the completion of the
fifth year of the commencement of this programme and to give
away awards to the best performing gram panchayats, district
MGNREGA teams and NGOs by the Union Rural Development
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the UPA Chairperson
Sonia Gandhi conferred the national award under the District
category to Tshering Namgyal Bhutia, District Development
Officer, North District.

The award under the Gram Panchayat category was awarded
to Milan Kumar Chettri, Panchayat Secretary, Chuba Phong Gram
Panchayat and in the NGO category Voluntary Health Association
of Sikkim (VHAS) was awarded.

North District was selected under the category -
Excellence in District Administration in the effective
implementation of MGNREGA? resulting in community-centric
development in challenging physical environment. A screening
committee had carried out evaluation in North district from
January 22 to 24 and had inspected the implementation of the
scheme at Kabi, Mangan and Dzongu. They were impressed with
the level of community involvement in this highest, steepest
and remotest district in the country, with a high tribal
population as well.

Milan Kumar Chettri, Panchayat Secretary of Chuba Phong
Gram Panchayat was instrumental in transforming a village
reeling under perennial drought by aligning the MGNREGA
programme to the needs of the village. With full guidance and
support from the DDO and the Block team they constructed 120
household level water storage tanks of 10,000 litres capacity
The villagers filled up these tanks from the running
drinking-water supply at night and used the overnight stored
water for livelihood activities during the day.

With winters becoming increasingly dry, due to the
impact of climate change, this investment in rural water
security paid immediate dividends and the villagers were not
only able to meet their drinking water requirements but also
used the surplus water for vegetable farming and animal

Under the MGNREGA Dhara Vikas program, the Nagi lake
at Namthang which had dried up 30 years back was being
revived and this initiative would further boost the natural
ecosystem and ground water regime of the region. Under the
guidance of Milan Chettri, this village has effectively
demonstrated climate-smart governance on how to adapt and
mainstream climate change concerns in ongoing developmental
programs, to transform the future of a village.

The Voluntary Health Association of Sikkim (VHAS)
received the Rozgar Jagrookta Puraskar (Employment Awareness
Award) for promoting effective implementation of MGNREGA in
the State of Sikkim. VHAS has been spearheading awareness
generation and social audits over the last three years in the


First Published: Friday, February 4, 2011 - 18:45
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