1. Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana
Notwithstanding the impressive progress that has been by the country on different fronts, poverty continues to be a matter of serious concern. The effect of large percentage of the poor on the country's development is obvious. The situation needs to be redressed quickly. It is in this context that the self-employment programmes acquire significance. Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY) is the single self-employment programme for the rural poor. Launched on April 1, 1999 the programme replaces the earlier self-employment and allied programmes - IRDP, TRYSEM, DWCRA, SITRA, GKY and MWS, which are no longer in operation. SGSY is an innovative and carefully thought-out Yojana. It takes into account all the strengths and weaknesses of the earlier self-employment programmes. It offers the perfect balance of credit and subsidy.
SGSY aims at establishing a large number of micro-enterprises in the rural areas, building upon the potential of the rural poor. It is rooted in the belied that the rural poor in India have competencies and given the right support can be successful producers of valuable goods/ services. Persons assisted under this programme will be known as Swarozgaris and not beneficiaries. A significant aspect of SGSY is that every family assisted under this programme will be brought above the poverty line in three years and therefore the programme aims at creating substantial additional incomes for the rural poor. Subject to availability of funds, it is proposed to cover 30% of the rural poor in each block in the next five years.
2. Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana
Rural Road Connectivity is not only a key component of Rural Development in India, it is also recognized as an effective poverty reduction programme. Notwithstanding the efforts made over the year, at the State and Central levels, through different programmes, about 40% of the Habitations in the country are still connected by all-weather roads. It is well known that even where connectivity has been provided, the roads constructed are of such quality that they cannot be categorized as all-weather roads. It was announced by the Prime Minister of India on 15th August, 2000.
The objective of the Govt. is to provide road connectivity, through good all-weather roads, to all Rural Habitations with a population of more than 500 persons by the year 20027 (end of the 10th Five Year Plan). The primary focus of the Programme will be on construction of new roads. However, upgradation (to prescribed standards) of existing roads will be permitted to be taken up under the programme so as to achieve connectivity through good all-weather roads. Extension of existing roads to the SC/ST Habitation in the village would also be covered under upgradation. Upgradation would, however, not cover repairs of existing roads.
The rural roads to be taken up will, by and large, be surfaced roads (black topped/ cement concrete). However, depending upon the soil conditions, all-weather roads may also be gravel roads, but with all necessary cross-drainage structures.
3. Employment Assurance Scheme
Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) was launched on 2nd October, 1993 for implementation in 1778 identified backward blocks of different states. The blocks selected were in the drought prone areas, desert areas, tribal areas and hilly areas. Later, the scheme was extended to the remaining blocks of the country in phased manner. At present, the scheme is being implemented in all the rural blocks of the country. the programme has been restructured from 1st April, 1999.
As its name suggests, the primary objective of the EAS is to provide gainful employment during the lean agricultural season in manual work to all able bodied adults in rural areas who are in need and desirous of work, but can not find it. The work may be either on farm or on other allied operations or on the normal plan/ no-plan works during such a period. The secondary objective is the creation of community, social and economic assets for sustained employment and development.
4. Rural Housing
Housing is vital for human survival and therefore essential for socio-economic development. The need for improved housing is most acutely felt among the rural poor. As part of the efforts to meet the housing needs of the rural poor, Indira Awaas Yojana was started in may 1985 as a sub-scheme of Jawahar Rozgar Yojana. From 1st January, 1996 it is being implemented as an independent scheme.
The objective of Indira Awaas Yojana is primarily to help construction of dwelling units and upgradation of existing unserviceable kutcha houses of members of SC/ ST, freed bounded labourers and also non-SC/ST rural poor below poverty line by providing them with grant-in-aid.
5. Credit-Cum-Subsidy Scheme for Rural Housing
To enable/ facilitate construction of houses for all households who have some repayment capacity.
6. Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana
Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY) is the restructured, streamlined and comprehensive version of the erstwhile Jawahar Rozgar Yojana (JRY). It has been launched on 1st April, 1999. It has been designed to improve the quality of life of the rural poor by providing them additional gainful employment.
The primary objective of JGSY is the creation of demand-driven village infrastructure including durable assets to enable the rural poor to increase the opportunities for sustained employment. The secondary objective is the generation of supplementary employment for the unemployed poor in the rural areas.
7. Wastelands Development
The Wastelands Development Division of Department of Land Resources, Ministry of Rural Development is implementing a wide range scheme for checking land degradation, increasing bio-mass availability, specially fuel wood and fodder and putting such wastelands into sustainable use.
8. Project Golden Thread
The Project Golden Thread is conceived as a rural development project through sericulture activity. This special project aims to increase livelihood of the poor through improvement of traditional sericulture activity in the North Eastern India. The project involves development of non-mulberry silk namely Eri (Endi) & Muga. These silks are found only in the North East India. The project is implemented by Department of Panchayat & Rural Development, Assam in collaboration with Central Silk Board and Department of Handloom Sericulture, Assam. The project is under the special SGSY of the Ministry of Rural Development, Govt. India (http://rural.nic.in).
Information maintained by the Directorate of Panchayat & Rural Development, Assam,