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Focus on border tourism, livelihood generation schemes under Samridh Seema Yojana: Secretary Planning

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SRINAGAR: Secretary of Planning, Development, and Monitoring Department, Dr. Raghav Langer, today chaired a meeting to review the progress on the preparation of the Annual Action Plan (AAP) 2023-24 under Samridh Seema Yojana (SSY).

Secretary held a detailed assessment of physical and financial progress achieved under SSY during 2022-23. He was apprised that against the total release of Rs 42.44 crores, an expenditure of Rs. 29.10 crores has been incurred, whereas 380 works have been completed against 478 works under SSY during 2022-23.

Secretary stressed upon the District Development Commissioners and concerned officers of border districts of Jammu, Samba, Kathua, Rajouri, Poonch, Baramulla, Kupwara, and Bandipora to implement the scheme for addressing the infrastructure gaps in border habitations through convergence. He asked them to meet the special developmental needs and well-being of the people living in remote and inaccessible areas through a participatory approach.

The Director General, BADP, and Chief Planning Officers of the concerned districts attended the meeting.

Addressing the officers, Secretary emphasized upon them to give priority to all the ongoing works of 2022-23 while formulating the Annual Action Plan (AAP) 2023-24 under the scheme which has been placed under District Capex Budget in the current financial year.

He asked the officers to focus on the inclusion of works like promoting border tourism, border Homestays, guest houses, tourism-related infrastructure, Skill Development training, and capacity building/Livelihood generation programme, Agriculture/Horticulture, and allied activities (Farm Mechanization/Farm Machinery Hiring Centers/Common Facilitation Centers/Micro Irrigation/Area expansion under orchard plantation/High Yielding Plantations) for community benefit in consultation with PRIs while formulating AAP 2023-24 under SSY. 

It was also agreed upon to include works like provisioning of decentralized renewal energy-related interventions such as solar dryers, solar mills, biomass–powered cold storage, and Solar Pumps among others for community benefit, Smart Classes, and Smart Labs besides provision for Monitoring Mechanisms (use of IT tools for outcome monitoring) in the current year.

Secretary directed the officers to avoid duplication of work besides achieving tangible outcomes from the interventions. He also asked for developing a mobile application and dashboard for mapping of the assets created, so far, both under Border Area Development Programme and Samridh Seema Yojana.

Pertinently, SSY was launched in 2022-23 in the Union Territory of J&K as a special initiative under the leadership of the Lieutenant Governor and guidance of the Chief Secretary, with an allocation of Rs 50 crore for inclusive development of border areas, in convergence with other schemes, especially in the seven Thematic Areas including Roads and Buildings, Health, Education, Agriculture, Power, Drinking Water Supply, Social Sector, and Sports Infrastructures.

The aim is to ensure the provision of essential infrastructure facilities and opportunities for sustainable living which would help integrate these areas with the mainstream by providing basic facilities. The initiative was to create a positive perception and encourage people to stay in the border areas in a dignified and secure environment.

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