Village to host Myanmar leader

A sleepy village on the Andhra Pradesh-Karnataka border, Papasanipalliis, is abuzz with activity as officials are gearting up to receive Nobel laureate and Myanmar opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi on Saturday.

Women belonging to self-help groups (SHG) are busy erecting arches and painting colourful “rangolis.”

The reason for the visit of the dignitary is the successful women groups of the village where 16 women SHGs stood as role models for the movement of women empowerment.
“The groups in the village have posted hundred per cent repayments of the loans they have taken from banks and other financial institutions,” said state Revenue Minister Dr N Raghuveera Reddy.

K Sudhakar, Congress MLA of Madakasira, said that the women had changed the mindset of the farmers and government officials so much so that they are now invited for all important meetings of the mandal and gram panchayats .  “We respect their advice and many villages have benefited from their suggestions on investments and also delivery channels,” the legislator said.

The village has achieved self sufficiency in sanitation, drainage, dairy development and organic farming, thanks to the credit rating achieved by the SHGs .
“Since the womenfolk are repaying loans the farmers have no excuses to keep payments for crop loans pending,” a local banker said.

A 40-year-old Dalit woman, Muddamma, is equally excited to host the VIP. “Suu Kyi will have lunch at her small pucca house in Papasanipalli. Muddamma was selected for this honour as she had suffered a lot before joining the SHG,” the minister said.
“I made use of the loans effectively to strengthen the financial position of my family by rearing two cows and getting sufficient income,” she said.

She is secure enough today to pay Rs 7,000 as fee for her son in a private college.
During her visit to Papasanipalli village in Anantapur, she will inaugurate a centre for nutritious food, which aims to provide wholesome food to pregnant women and children. The centre will be run by women’s SHGs.

Four helipads have been prepared near Kothula Gutta, just 1 km from the village.
“The opposition leader from Myanmar will walk to the village after she lands at the helipad. Police have beefed up security,” said Durga Das, Collector of Anantapur district. She will interact with farm workers and farmers.

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