Article 243G he of the Constitution intends to empower the Gram Panchayats (GPs) by enabling the State Governments to devolve powers and authority in respect of all 29 subjects listed in the 11th Schedule for local planning and implementation of schemes for economic development and social justice. The local bodies (GPs) play a significant role in the effective implementation of flagship schemes on subjects of national importance, for transformation of rural India.
Village Poverty Reduction Plan
- Gram Panchayat Development Plan (GPDP) brings together both the citizens and their elected representatives in the decentralized planning processes.
- GPDP is expected to reflect the development issues, perceived needs and priorities of the community, including that of the marginalized sections.
- GPDP is conducted from 2nd October to 31st December, every year across the country, under the People’s Plan Campaign (PPC).
- The PPC guidelines and the joint advisory issued by the Ministry of Panchayati Raj and Ministry of Rural Development, has mandated SHGs and their federations under Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) to participate in the annual GPDP planning process and prepare the Village Poverty Reduction Plan (VPRP).
- VPRP is a comprehensive demand plan prepared by the Self Help Group (SHG) network and their federations for projecting their demands and local area development which needs to be integrated with the GPDP.
- The process allows poor families, who are members of SHGs formed under DAY-NRLM, to raise their demands in a participatory method and submit the final plan to the Gram Panchayats for consideration.
Objectives of VPRP are:
- Prepare a comprehensive and an inclusive demand plan of the community for local development
- Facilitate an interface between the SHG federation and Panchayati Raj institutions for development of demand plan
- Strengthen the community based organisations and their leadership for active participation in poverty reduction activities
Demands under VPRP are categorized into five major components:
- Social inclusion – plan for inclusion of vulnerable people/household into SHGs under NRLM
- Entitlement – demand for various schemes such as MGNREGS, SBM, NSAP, PMAY, Ujjwala, Ration card etc.
- Livelihoods – specific demand for enhancing livelihood through developing agriculture, animal husbandry, production and service enterprises and skilled training for placement etc.
- Public goods and services – demand for necessary basic infrastructure, for renovation of the existing infrastructure and for better service delivery
- Resource development – demand for protection and development of natural resources like land, water, forest and other locally available resources
- Social development – plans prepared for addressing specific social development issues of a village under the low cost no cost component of GPDP
- Self Help Groups (SHGs) are small groups of poor people. The members of an SHG face similar problems.
- They help each other, to solve their problems. SHGs promote small savings among their members. The savings are kept with the bank.
- This is the common fund in the name of the SHG. The SHG gives small loans to its members from its common fund.
- SHG is an informal group and registration under any Societies Act, State Cooperative Act or a partnership firm is not mandatory.