Maharashtra government to transform 1,000 villages with the help of corporates

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MUMBAI: The state government has decided to launch an initiative ‘mission transform’ of 1,000 villages across state to improve livelihood condition and sustainable development of villages with the help of corporate sector and civil society.

The mission will be kicked off with 100 villages on October 2, birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. This is the first kind of initiative in the country. The contribution for the mission will be 50-50% of the government and partnering agencies.

Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis held a meeting on Thursday in Mantralaya with 50 big corporate personalities such as Ratan Tata, Anand Mahindra, Rajshree Birla including Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan and Executive director of Maharashtra state model village programme Popatrao Pawar to discuss the mission.

Fadnavis, after a meeting announced in the press conference that all corporate houses are keen to support mission transform in the form of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).

While explaining ‘mission transform’ Fadnavis said, “It means, sustainable development for livelihood, taking initiative to improve Jal (water), Jameen (land) and Jungle of the villages through scientific planning of water resources and conservation, agriculture, to connect locals with the various skills, to improve health and education indications of villages as well.”

About the criteria of selecting villages CM said, “25% villages will be from tribal area whereas remaining villages will be of low Human Development Index (HDI). Of total 50% villages will be selected by partnering agencies. However overall structure will be finalise in the governing council, which will be headed by CM,” said Fadnavis.

According to the 2010 Census villages data, the maximum number of villages are in Vidarbha and Marathwada region. Out of the total 39,588 census villages, 16,023 villages are in Vidharbha and 8,600 villages in Marathwada region. CM Fadnavis also said that most of the low HDI villages are from these areas.

“The corporate sector is already working with the government in various sectors under the CSR initiative. We will use their resources, knowledge, technology, efficiency and planning and implementation skills to set up an institutional mechanism, that would amalgamate work done by different companies in different areas to transform villages along with the government,” Fadnavis said.

The government has planned to form an institutional mechanism under which a governing council body will be registered as trust of company that will be a decision making body in this mission.

The existing government schemes will be converged in to this mission which will be help to fill the lacunae, he said. Fadnavis informed that Rajashree Birla, Aditya Birla Group, is keen to take 300 villages of the 1,000 under her ambit to develop.