PM to review progress of 30 'aspirational' districts

Last Updated 29 October 2019, 10:59 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 6 will review the performance of 30 of the 117 most underdeveloped districts in the country on various indicators such as health, nutrition, education and agriculture.

These districts were identified by the Niti Aayog and come under the government's "Transformation of Aspirational Districts Programme"

"This is first time that the focus would be exclusively on 30 aspirational districts," a senior government official said.

Twenty have shown 'best improvement' and 10 'low progress' on various development indices, according to a communique to ministries and departments concerned.

The communique stated that the prime minister has decided to include the aspirational districts programme as one of the agenda items in the forthcoming PRAGATI meeting, scheduled to be held on November 6.

PRAGATI is an integrating and interactive platform to address public grievances and review programmes.

The prime minister will interact with chief secretaries and secretaries to review the progress made by these 30 most underdeveloped districts on various indicators like health and nutrition, education, agriculture and water resources, financial inclusion and skill development and basic infrastructure, officials said.

"The identification of 10 districts, which have shown relatively low progress, their selection has been arrived at on the basis of slow improvement, as well as, the district not having been able to secure any rank for getting an additional allocation.

"The purpose of identifying these districts is that in the meeting, general discussions on making 'development a mass movement' are expected to be taken up for all Aspirational Districts," the communique read.

Districts under 'best improvement' include Balrampur, Sonabhadra and Chitrakoot in Uttar Pradesh; Sheikhpura and Aurangabad in Bihar; Wayanad in Kerala; Naupada in Odisha; Barwani in Madhya Pradesh and Barpeta in Assam.

Those with 'low progress' are Kiphire in Nagaland; Malkangiri and Nabrangpur in Odisha; Gumla and Garhwa in Jharkhand; Sirohi in Rajasthan, Narayanpur in Chhattisgarh, Dhubri in Assam; and Sitamarhi and Katihar in Bihar.

The government had launched the 'Transformation of Aspirational Districts' initiative in January last year with an aim to improve the country's ranking under Human Development Index, raising living standards of its citizens and ensuring inclusive growth of all.

A total of 117 aspirational districts were identified by NITI Aayog based upon composite indicators from health and nutrition, education, agriculture and water resources, financial inclusion and skill development and basic infrastructure which have an impact on Human Development Index.

(Published 29 October 2019, 10:44 IST)

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