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‘Back to the Village’ program begins across J&K 

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Srinagar, Jun 20: In a first of its kind, government’s ambitious outreach programme ‘Back to the Village’ started across Jammu and Kashmir on Thursday.

As part of this programme, bureaucrats will spend the next 36 hours in different panchayats, gathering feedback from people on development of their areas, an official spokesperson said.

The eight-day programme, from June 20-27, is being organised across all Panchayats of the state, he said.

Under the ‘Back to the Village’ programme, government officers will be spending two days and one night in different panchayats, the spokesperson said.

During their stay, they will hold meetings with elected ‘panches’ and ‘sarpanches’, hold ‘gram’ (village) and ‘mahila sabhas’ (women assemblies) in addition to other grassroots level interactions, he said.

“The basic objective of this programme is to move governance from its seat of operation to the doorsteps of the people in villages,” a senior government official said.

Elaborating the objective of the programme, Chief Secretary B V R Subrahmanyam had said last week it will focus on four main goals viz. energizing panchayats, collecting feedback on delivery of government schemes and programmes, capturing specific economic potential and undertaking assessment of needs of villages, besides affording an opportunity to gazetted officers to visit the villages.

The programme will involve the people of the state and government officials in a joint effort to deliver the mission of equitable development across all our rural areas, the spokesperson said.

The outreach initiative is primarily aimed at energizing the 4,483 panchayats and directing development efforts in rural areas through community participation and to create in the rural masses an earnest desire for a decent standard of living, he said.

The spokesperson said the feedback obtained during the exercise will help the government in assessing and subsequently tailoring the various central and state government schemes to improve delivery of village-specific services.

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