Govt prepares rural action plan to tackle Naxal issue

Initiating the plan, I&B Minister Ambika Soni  and Rural Development Minister C P Joshi participated in the two-day workshop in the capital on Wednesday. The aim is to strengthen local self governance and accelerate rural development programmes with the support of the I&B Ministry.

The focus of the workshop is on designing and deploying innovative means to promote dissemination of information and knowledge, encouraging people’s participation, strengthening vigilance and public accountability and ensuring proper delivery of benefits of the government programmes to the people, official sources said.

While it is not stated, knowledgeable sources have pointed out that the initiative comes soon after Sonia said in an article in Congress mouthpiece “Sandesh” that “the rise of Naxalism is a reflection of the need for our development initiatives to reach the grassroots, especially in our most backward districts. This is why our government is putting in place more targeted development schemes for our most backward districts.”
Giving reasons for starting the initiative, the Rural Development Ministry said in a statement: “As the nation makes the move to the rights and entitlements based approach to meet the needs and aspirations of the people the need to strengthen local self governance assumes more significance.

“It is more relevant in the context of rural India where people need to be aware of their rights and policymakers of their duties to fulfil the aspirations of am admi.”
The workshop will focus on assessing the current status of rural development programs, analysing their strengths and weaknesses, highlighting best practices, fostering innovations, developing ICT (Information & Communication Technology) solutions to problems, involving rural youth in national development, and formulating a training and communication action plan to achieve the objectives.

Policy documents
During the workshop, each participant will share their policy documents, including guidelines and latest instructions, best practices and innovations with the focus on state-wise physical and financial performance, areas of concern, best practices and innovations.

This will be used by the states, state institutes of rural developments, regional Doordarshan kendras and radio stations, and officers of the ministries of Rural Development, Panchayati Raj, Information & Broadcasting and Youth Affairs & Sports to prepare the action plan.

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