Need to strengthen Panchayat Raj institutions stressed

Chamarajanagar MP R Dhruvanarayan said, only if the Panchayat Raj institutions are strengthened, the migration of youths from villages to cities, in search of job opportunities, can be controlled.

He was addressing the gathering during the two-day national seminar on 'Role of Panchayati Raj Institutions in Rural Development', organised by the Department of Studies in Public Administration, University of Mysore (UoM), at Rani Bahaddur Auditorium here. The MP said, "The villages should be developed with basic facilities and job opportunities provided to curb the migration. The development of rural areas is possible only if the Panchayat Raj institutions are strengthened."

"The country has nearly six lakh villages and most of them lack basic infrastructure, resulting in migration of people. A large number of people from North Karnataka migrate to Goa in search of jobs," Dhruvanarayan said.

The state government has planned to establish Rural Development University in the state and the Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has earmarked funds for the same in the budget for 2015-16, he said.

The MP said, "In all, there are 2,56,629 Panchayat Raj institutions in the country. Out of this, Karnataka has 6,024 gram panchayats and 37 GPs in Mysuru district alone. The state government has formed 460 new GPs in the recent past."

Explaining about the Panchayat Raj system, the MP said it was introduced for the development of villages. The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) is one of the prominent schemes, introduced to provide employment for the rural population, he said.

Visiting professor of D Devaraja Urs Chair, UoM K V Aiyanna, in his keynote address said, rural development is the process of raising socio-economic status of the rural population on a sustainable basis through optimum utilisation of local resources of both natural and human. The objective of the rural development is achieved only when the rural people actively participate in the development process, he said.

UoM in-charge Vice Chancellor Dayananda Mane, Registrar D Bharati, and others were present.

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