Belapu gram panchayat in Padubidri of Udupi district, which had earlier grabbed the attention of the nation with its achievements, is in the news for yet another reason. This time, it is for setting up of a code of conduct and following it for the last 10 years.
While the State government has now made it mandatory for Panchayat Raj bodies to start a day's proceedings with the State anthem and conclude it with the National anthem, Belapu gram panchayat has been doing it for 10 years as a part of its routine, thus rekindling the spirit of patriotism among people.
Belapu gram panchayat office starts its day with the State anthem at 10 am sharp. The National anthem echoes in the panchayat premises at 5 pm, as the day comes to an end. Both the anthems are made audible to the entire village through loudspeakers attached to the roof of the gram panchayat building. People from all walks of life, including farmers and daily wage workers, pay respect to the State and the National anthems when they are being sung.
Belapu village has carved its own niche, by finding its place in the Class five Kannada text book of the state syllabus. The lesson ‘Madari Grama Belapu’, meaning, ‘Belapu: A model village’ is being studied by lakhs of students across the state. It is being delineated upon as to how the village has successfully implemented the programmes which have set a trend in the nation.
Among the salient features of the village are the drinking water purifier unit, solid waste management unit, rural playground, planting of one lakh saplings, Suvarna Soudha, small packing industry, sites distributed to rural beneficiaries and the more recent Science Research Centre.
Gram Panchayat President Deviprasad Shetty said that the resolution on the singing of the State and National anthems on a daily basis in the gram panchayat was accepted 10 years back. This was done to elevate the levels of patriotism and nationalism among the villagers. The objective is fulfilled, with all villagers starting their day's work with the State anthem and concluding the work with National anthem. This has been helpful in instilling the value of patriotism and also in generating respect towards our state among children, Deviprasad said and added that the recent order by the government to implement the very system in the entire Panchayat Raj, has made him happy.