Over Rs 12.5K cr earmarked for overall district plan this year in J-K: LG
Stresses on public participation in formulation, implementation of district development plans
Jammu: Lt Governor Manoj Sinha on Saturday announced that more than Rs 12,599 crore have been earmarked for overall district plan this year in Jammu and Kashmir, and said ‘Janbhagidari’ would be the foundation of formulation and implementation of district development plans.
He said aspirations and expectations of the common people and elected representatives, besides needs of the districts would be reflected in the plans.
Sinha made the remarks during a meeting via video conference with all the 20 deputy commissioners to discuss the effective formulation of district development plans.
“The formulation of District Development Plans is of immense significance, especially after the constitution of District Development Councils (DDCs) with the democratic decentralization of functions, funds and functionaries… We want to make J&K the best model of decentralization and grassroots participatory planning,” he said.
For the first time, Sinha said, democratic set up at the grassroots level is being involved in the formulation of development plans, thus empowering the common people and making the three-tier Panchayati Raj system more vibrant.
According to an official press release, emphasizing the significance of ‘Janbhagidari’ (people’s participation) in the development process, the LG asked the Deputy Commissioners to ensure maximum participation of public and their representatives while formulating the District Development Plan of their respective districts.
“Around 30 lakh people, one-third of them women, are expected to participate in the planning exercise,” he said, asking the deputy commissioners to incorporate DDCs’ vision and include works which hold priority as per the needs of the local population.
The LG advised the Deputy Commissioners to hold regular interactions with DDCs, BDCs and Gram Sabhas, and maintain regional balance, besides ensuring uniform distribution of funds.
He said the J&K administration is clear with its agenda of complete implementation of 73rd and 74th constitutional amendments.
“With the substantial increase in this year’s budget for overall districts plan to Rs 12,599.33 crore, which is more than double from the previous year, and with the effective utilization of experiences of Back to Village and My Town My Pride events, the UT can achieve new heights of holistic and equitable development,” the LG said.
He said every district would be assigned a Senior Secretary to mentor the Deputy Commissioners and district functionaries to achieve the outcome; besides 100 percent physical verification would be ensured.
“Unless a central sector or Centrally Sponsored Scheme has a specific guideline regarding exemption from tendering, every single work will have to be executed through tendering process only,” he said.
For promotion of the tourism sector, the Lt Governor asked the Deputy Commissioners to identify unexplored tourism potential areas of their respective districts.
He advised the officials to focus on far flung and remote areas while preparing the District Health Plan.
The meeting was informed about the overall plan ceiling district-wise, an official spokesman said, adding it was also informed that PRI (Programme-Related Investments) grant at the rate of Rs 23.30 lakh per panchayat, BDC grant at the rate of Rs 25 lakh per block, and DDC grant at Rs 1 crore per district have been budgeted for the current financial year.
The District Development Plans will comprise Block Development Plans, which will cater to the list of issues required to be addressed at Block level. The planning at Block level will ensure that issues between different Panchayats are addressed where it involves more than one Panchayat. At the grass root level, Panchayat Development Plans will be formulated involving Gram Sabhas, he said.
For promotion of the tourism sector, the LG asked the DCs to identify unexplored tourism potential areas of their respective districts.
The LG also noted that the target of 11 more districts to be provided with 100 percent piped water supply under Jal Jeevan Mission would constitute an important component of Drinking Water Plan.
He advised for keeping a dedicated focus on far flung and remote areas while preparing the District Health Plan.
The LG said that sectors like Agriculture, Horticulture, Fisheries, Dairy, and Animal Husbandry possess great growth potential. In J&K, by developing clear plans in accordance with the needs of the people, we can enhance farmers’ income by three to four times, he added.
While discussing the District Sports Plan, the LG asked the DCs to ensure every Panchayat has a playfield to facilitate the budding sports persons.
Further, the LG stressed on preparing a solid District Road Connectivity Plan so that proper connectivity can be made available and district roads are maintained in proper condition.
Under the District Employment Plan, each district shall ensure that the job card holders get 100 days of employment during the year, and it would be considered a performance indicator of the Deputy Commissioners. The youth seeking self employment in any Panchayat should also be identified and the necessary financial assistance would be provided from a number of schemes being run by the UT of J&K.
The meeting was informed about the Overall Plan Ceiling District-Wise. It was also informed that PRI Grant at the rate of Rs 23.30 lakhs per Panchayat, BDC Grant at the rate of Rs 25.00 lakhs per Block, and DDC Grant at Rs One crore per District has been budgeted for the current financial year.
BVR Subrahmanyam, Chief Secretary; Arun Kumar Mehta, Financial Commissioner, Finance Department and Nitishwar Kumar, Principal Secretary to the LG also shared their suggestions for the formulation of District Development Plans.
Pandurang K. Pole and Dr Raghav Langer- Divisional Commissioners also attended the meeting through virtual mode.