ANNUAL PLAN 2002-03
The local level planning for integrated Development was a phenomenon of relatively recent origin coinciding with the realization by the Government that the involvement of the rural people, particularly the rural poor in their development was utmost significance. The rationale of local level planning was based on its role in facilitating decision making by the rural poor in formulating and implementing development projects and activities more acutely attuned to their requirements and mobilizing and allocating resources to exploit fully the growth potential of local areas. That would lead to a development scenario at the local level consistent with the specific needs of the people, growth potential of the area and budgetary allocations available. Thus, the emphasis would be to identity the location of development centers, including peoples organization and development departments at the level to provide coordination; to mobilize and organize peoples participation; to plan for infrastructure and economic and social development; to facilitate the undertaking of developmental programs including conduct of diagnostic surveys or prepare village profile and to supply inputs to the village population.
Accordingly, the Sikkim Rural Development Agency (SRDA) wad devised as a principal organ to act as a crucial linkage in the capacity building of different agencies. Viz the Government functionaries, PRIs, NGOs, and financial institutions involved in the process of local level planning for effective implementation of anti-poverty programmes; to act as a facilitator to the targeted beneficiaries; to coordinate and oversee the conduct of BPL related surveys; to aid and carry out research and evaluation studies that are initiated by the Centre and State governments.
As required under the guidelines issued by the Government of India, the Sikkim Rural Development Agency (SRDA) which is synonymous to the DRDA, ordinarily is a society registered under Societies Registration Act consisting of an apex Governing Body known as SRDA with four District Administrative Agencies (DDA) conforming to the four administrative districts of Sikkim. Each of these DDA is further sub-divided into DAA blocks and details are as under:
Till 31-03-1999, administrative cost of the DRDA were being met by way of part of the programme fund of IRDP, JGSY, SGRT, DPAP etc. and with varying salary structure of different states, a new provision of "DRDA Administration" was introduced with 75.25 Centre/State financial support.
The SRDA under the present arrangement is headed by the Secretary, RDD who is also the ex-officio Chairperson and each of the programme, Viz. SGRY, EAS, Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yujana (JGSY) and Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yozana (SGSY) are headed by the Project Directors in the rank of Joint Secretary with a backup support of organizational infrastructure as emphasized in the DRDA guidelines.
For the year 2002-03, a provision of Rs 100.00 lakhs was earmarked under DRDA Administration for Establishment expenditure i.e. mainly salary payment of staff under JGSY, SGRY/EAS and SGSY.
JAWAHAR GRAM SAMRIDHI YOJANA & ALLIED PROGRAMMES
Under Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana and allied programmes, the principal constituents are (a) Jawahar Grad Samridhi Yojana (b) Indira Awas Yojana (IAY), (c) Indira Awas Yojana (Conversion/Upgradation). This anti-poverty programme is being implemented in all the rural villages of Sikkim and is financed at the ratio of 75:25 by both the Centre and State Governments.
The detailed break-up of each scheme and its proposed outlay are discussed below in details.
(a) JAWAHAR GRAM SAMRIDHI YOJANA (JGSY)
Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY) is the re-structured, streamline and comprehensive version of the erstwhile Jawahar Rojgar Yojana and was designed to improve the quality of the poor. This programme was launched on 1st April, 1999.
The primary objective of the scheme is creation of the scheme i.e. demand driven community village infrastructure including durable assets at village level to enable the rural poor to increase opportunities for sustain the employment. The secondary objective is the generation of supplementary employments for the unemployed families living below the poverty line in rural areas.
This programme is being implemented at the village level and the entire funds are distributed to the Gram Panchayat Units for taking up the programmes for maintenance of assets created and partly for the benefits of largeted SC/ST including the disabled.
As per the new Guidelines received from Govenrment of India, the above scheme of JGSY is to be merged with Employment Assurance Scheme and a new scheme called "Sampoorna Gramin Rozgar Yojana (SGRY)" is to be implemented henceforth. Thus from the 10th Plan, the scheme of JGRY will be converted into SGRY. As a result of the emergence of such new scheme called SGRY, the schemes to be confined under JGSY are only IAY and upgradation and conversion of Kacha houses into Pucca or Semi Pucca houses.
INDIRA AWAAS YOJANA
Approved Annual Plan 2002-03 = Rs 70.00 lakh
Indira Awaas Yojana was carved out from the erstwhile Jawahar Rojgar Yojana and the modified version was launched from 01-01-1996. Funds for implementing these are shared in the ratio of 75:25 by the Centre and the State Government.
The objective of the programme is to help in the construction of new dwelling units by members of Scheduled Caste/Tribes, freed bounded laborers and also non ST/ST BPL families living in the Rurla areas.
As per guideline, for hilly state like Sikkim, House construction assistance to the tune of Rs 22,000/- is provided for each beneficiaries who are identified in the village level in the Gram Sabha and the area MLAs. The construction of houses are entrusted to the beneficiaries themselves who are equally benefited with employment opportunities.
During the 10th Plan, discussion with Govenrment of India, it was debated that the fund allocation for annual Plan of 2002-03 under IAY should be enhanced keeping in reference to the total allocation approved under the Scheme JGSY for the 10th Five Year Plan.
The annual Plan allocation made as per sectional allocation to the Deparmtent under the Scheme i.e. JGSY is Rs 90.00 lakh. Out fo this allocation, the Deparmtnet has set aside Rs 70.00 lakh for IAY schemes and Rs 20.00 lakh under upgradation.
The physical target proposed for annual plan under IAY for 2002-03 is 660 Nos of IAY houses.
INDIRA AWAAS YOJANA (CONVERSION/UPGRADATION)
This parallel IAY (Conversion/Upgraation) scheme was launched recently with a view to assist the IAY target groups already having the dwelling houses in the conversion and up-gradation unserviceable Kutcha houses into a Pucca/Semi-Pucca houses.
For conversion of Kutcha house into a pucca/semi-pucca houses, uniform financial assistance of Rs 10,000/- is provided to each beneficiaries.
The physical target proposed for annual plan 2002-03 under up-gradation is 450 numbers.
SAMPOORNA GRAMEEN ROZGAR YOJANA (SGRY)
Up to the end of financial year 2001-2002, two, different centrally sponsored (75:25 Centre: State) rural employment programmes namely the Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY) and Employment Assistance Scheme (EAS) were being implemented throughout the Country.
Based on several evaluation and impact assessment studies made by different agencies engaged by the Union Rural Development Ministry throughout the Country coupled with bumper and surplus food grain production in the Country, emerged a consensus to merge the on-going Jawahar Gram Samridhi Yojana (JGSY) and Employment Assurance Scheme (EAS) and will be unilaterally known as Sampoorna Gramin Rojgar Yojana (SGRY).
Hard pressed with mobilization of surplus good grain and to mitigate the plight of tarmers throughout the country, it was also decided to immediately launch and implement the scheme in its full spirit from 01-04-2002. The sudden imposition of SGRY guidelines obviously has jeopardized the proposals in the State Plan.
The recently launched a new Centrally Sponsored Schemes, the Sampoorna Gramin Rojgrah Yojana (SGRY) incorporates a new concept of "Food for Work". Unlike the erstwhile EAS and JGSY, 5 kg of food grains in kind will be distributed as part of wage per manday and the remaining will be paid in cash under SGRY.
The scheme will be on cost sharing basis between Central and State for the ratio of 75:25.
The target group of the scheme will be the rural poor both APL and BPL who are in need of wage employment and are willing to take up manual or unskilled work in and around of his or her villages and habitation with greater preference to poorest among the poor, SC/ST, parent of child labour withdrawn from hazardous occupation.
The programme will be implemented in two streams namely; viz.
The 1st stream will be implemented at the District and intermediate Panchayat Levels with 50% of the total fund under SGRY to be distributed between Zilla Parishads (20%) and Panchayat Samitis (30%) on the basis of proportion of SC/ST and total rural population in the respective Panchayat Samitis in the District. The programme will be executed on the basis of Annual Action Plan approved by the Panchayat Samitis with target to mitigate hazards caused calamity prone and high labour migration. Similarly, 22.5% of the fund will be earmarked for individual beneficiaries hailing from BPL, SCs/STs.
The 2nd stream, the 50% of the funds allocated to the district will be released to Gram Panchayat directly by the DRDA. It will be implemented a village Level for which the remaining 50% of the funds under SGRY will be earmarked for Gram Panchayat to be distributed through the DRDA/Zilla Parishads.
The Primary objective of the new scheme SGRY is to create employment opportunities for those rural poor who are willing to take up manual unskilled work in rural areas. Creation of socio-economic infrastructure becomes an essential component to achieve primary objective. Hence, adequate focus is being given to create rural link paths which embellish inter-village social and economic activity; act as facilitator and linkages to the social sector development initiatives by way of construction of village level Integrated Child Development Scheme (ICDS) buildings, crematorium sheds, mini-community centers Capital component undertake these infrastructures under the State Plan proposals are non-existent.
The erstwhile EAS guidelines require guaranteeing 100 mandays of employment opportunities to a job seeker in the villages. It is unrealistic and difficult to guarantee, as huge volume of financial support is needed. Eg. 100 Mandays (MD) x 50,000 Job Seekers = 50,00,000 Man-day x 12 months = 6,00,00,000 MD x Rs 50/- MW = Rs 30,00,00,000/-. Hence, it is difficult to guarantee 100 days employment opportunities to all.
In Sikkim, there are 166. GPUs and two traditional Dzumsas. Even to cater to the genuine demands of 166 GPUs, calculated @Rs 5.00 lakhs would require an outlay of Rs 8.00 crores, which is not readily available. On the contrary, the consciousness is more and each and every village is hard pressed with demands for more employment opportunities.
There are at present 50,000 registered job seekers in the villages and the demand for more job opportunities are ever increasing. For registering, machineries like the Gram Panchayats and Administrative Agencies are engaged and are being updated at regular interval of time.
The mandays generation activity is a mechanism to temporary relief mechanism to mitigate the economic problems of rural poor.
During the Tenth Plan Period, an outlay of Rs 1,500.00 lakhs is approved under the State Plan and anticipate to receive Rs 200.00 lakhs as Central Share with which it targeted to create 42.00 lakhs additional employment opportunities for job seekers in the rural areas.
An outlay of Rs 300.00 lakhs is earmarked during the Plan Period 2002-03 and a central allocation of Rs 400.00 lakhs is anticipated. During the plan year; it is anticipated to generate 8.00 lakhs mandays in the rural areas.
SIKKIM RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT AGENCY (S.R.E.D.A.)
With the dawn of the 21st Century, it has become ever more evident that economic development based on excessive consumption of conventional fossil fuel cannot be sustained for long.
The efforts of environmental degradation is there for everyone to see. It is against this backdrop that non-conventional or renewable sources of energy have become a viable option to achieve sustainable development. Renewable energy, which appeared as just a concept in the last millennium may now become the only solution for this Century.
During the 10th Plan Period, i.e. 2002-03 to 2006-07 ongoing programmes under the New and Renewable Sources of Energy (NRSE) are to be continued into the new millennium.
In order to effectively implement NRSE projects, an autonomous agency, Sikkim Renewable Energy Development Agency (SREDA) has been formed by the State Government. The broad objectives of SREDA is to explore avenues for harnessing energy from non conventional and renewable sources. This is to be achieved by identifying these sources and demonstrating the viability of these energy sources. SREDA also aims at providing technical assistance in the field of renewables.
The fund provided in the State Plan Fund will be treated as grants-in-Aid to SREDA.
Biogas: Under the National Biogas Development Project (NBDP), the Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy (MNES), Government of India gives Central Financial Assistance. Funds required for State share is to be provided by SREDA in order to achieve targets. The proposed target for Biogas during 2002-03 are 250 Nos.
Improved Chula: Under the National programme for Improved Chula (NPIC), the MNES, Government of India provides CFA. The physical targets proposed during 2002-03 are 3000 Nos.
Village Electrification: This is a new programme and it to be as per the directives of MNEs, one of the thrust areas in the 10th Plan period. This programme being necessitated from the fact that there are over 1800 un-electrified villages/ cluster of houses in the Country and these are to be electrified by non-conventional and renewable sources of energy. 90% of the cost of village electrification is to be borne by MNEW and therefore 10% share of State Government is reflected in the budget. A total of 28 villages are to be covered under this scheme during the 10th Plan period. However, during 2002-03 no such scheme is proposed or finalized.
Energy Parks: In order to promote awareness on the advantages of renewable sources of energy, the MNES is sponsoring Energy Parks that are to be set up in various districts. Two such energy parts are envisaged for the 10th Plan period and accordingly, a token provision of Rs 1.00 lakhs each is being reflected as proposed budgetary requirement during 10th Plan Period.
Aditya Solar Shops: The concept of opening such retail outlets for renewable energy appliances it to bring these synsterns into the open market, and also to provide the people with convenient and accessible technical backup for repairs of such systems. One shrop has already been sanctioned and one more it expected to be set up in the 10th Plan period. The MNES, Government of India provides full support, a provision of Rs 1.00 lakh is proposed as Tate share towards this project.
Power Plants: This is another project that is being supported by the MNES to the extent of 90% of project costs. These projects are aimed at providing solar lighting systems to whole buildings and villages. It is expected that these will be useful in building such as Primary Health Centre and various Government Buildings. As such, adequate provisions have been set aside in the proposed budget.
Till financial year 2001-02, the programme for Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) viz. Solar Lantern, Home Lighting etc. were also a part of this scheme under SREDA. But since 2002-03 this particular programme has been done away by MNES.
Besides these above programmes, adequate provisions have also to be earmarked under the scheme for payment of salaries, expenditures as Office Expenses, Travel Expenses etc.
INTEGRATED RURAL ENERGY PROGRAMME (IREP)
This is also an ongoing scheme taken up during VIIIth Plan period. The objectives of the schemes are similar to those of NRSE i.e. emphasize is being given to saving of energy, specially in domestic cooking and heating and also in lighting sector through solar voltaic programmes. The programmes taken up are mainly family sized bio gas plants, improved chulhas in both in fixed and portable form and energy plantation. During the 10th Plan period, emphasize will be given to the continuing of these programmes besides these minor programmes such as biomass gasification, water mills, and other fuel saving devices will be taken up.
One of the major new programmes to be taken up under this scheme during 10th Plan and to be commenced from financial year 2002-03 is distribution to LPG gas with stove. The fund for this new programme are earmarked under State share of Plan fund.
For the Annual Plan, a provision of Rs 230.00 lakh has been provided under IREP sector and out of this allocation Rs 200.00 lakhs is earmarked for the above new programme of LPG with stove distribution to BPL category including weaker section of people.
The target for such distribution of LPG along with stove for year 2002-03 are for around 6700 beneficiaries.
The scheme of Rural Housing was initiated in the State in 1988-89 with a view to provide housing assistance to the economically weaker sections of the society.
In 1995-96, this scheme was radically modified on seeing the acute difficulty of the rural people. From then onwards, each beneficiary is provided with 30 pieces of GCI sheets and Rs 20,000/- cash assistance which is disbursed in 2 equal instalments.
The Department has developed a standard plan and estimate for rural houses. The plinth area is 319 Sq. ft. and the cost using mainly locally available materials is Rs 34,600/-. Any expenditure over and above the quantum of Government assistance has to be borne by the beneficiary.
This scheme has now fallen under the category of PMGY but the implementation remains unchanged.
For annual Plan of 2002-03, a provision of Rs 827.00 lakhs under Rural Housing Schemes has been provided. The physical target proposed for Annual Plan (2002-03) under Rural Housing are:-
(1) Financial assistance of Rs 10,000/- each to 6000 beneficiaries and
(2) G.C.I. sheet distribution of 30 numbers to each beneficiaries.
The selection of beneficiaries will be done through the District Level Committee comprising of the District Collector and District Development Officer. The committee will ensure that the list of beneficiaries is authenticated by the area MLA and Gram Panchayats.
The criterion for selection of beneficiaries will be:-
1. Persons living below Poverty Line.
2. Landless (Sukumbasis) Agricultural Laborers
3. Weaker section of the people in the community.
(b) Model Village
1) Annual Plan 2002-03 = Rs 1173.00 lakh
Construction of Model Village is a new Scheme which has come into implementation since year 2001-02. During 10th Plan period, the implementation of the scheme will be continued.
For the Annual Plan of 2002-03, an allocation of Rs 1173.00 lakhs has been earmarked under this new scheme. Though the implementation of this new scheme was started since 2001-02, but the actual implementation will be commenced from 2002-03.
Under the scheme the target proposed are:-
Construction of 25 numbers of Model Houses each in 27 constituencies. Thus the total number of Model Houses/ Villages will be 675 numbers. The standard cost for construction of each mode house has been uniform by standardized at Rs 3.00 lakhs per house. The total financial implication, thus involved would be Rs 20,25,00,000/- The construction of these Model Village under Rural Housing Scheme which is being implemented from year 2002-03 will be of first phase programme.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND PANCHAYATI RAJ INSTITUTION
9TH FIVE YEAR PLAN : A REVIEW
The enactment of the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act 1992 was an opportune prelude to the commencement of the 9th Five Year Plan because most of the activities of the Panchayati Raj Institutions during the 9th Plan was envisaged within the broad frame work of the Constitutional provisions resulting from the 73rd Amendment Act 1992 and a series of related legislation passed for strengthening and grating constitution validity to the Panchayati Raj in the Country.
In order to give credibility to the intents and purposes of the provisions of the Constitutional Amendment, it because imperative that supporting acts and rules were passed. Accordingly, the Sikkim Panchayat Act, 1993 was passed, the provisions of which were aimed at devolution of powers to the Panchayat Raj Institutions and the District Level and the Gram level.
Similarly, High Power Committee was constituted and State Level meetings were held to examine various issues relating to the decentralization of administrative and Financial powers to the Panchayat. Chalking out suitable strategy for the devolution of powers, identification of sectoral schemes of different departments to be transferred to the Panchayats, and determination of quantum of funds to be transferred to the Panchayats Raj Institution were the key term of references for the committee and the meetings.
Likewise Sikkim Zilla Panchayat (Financial Rules), 1999 was also framed to help the Zilla Panchayat administration for effective management of the funds placed at their disposal.
With these constitutional provisions and the supporting inputs in terms of necessary statutory backups, the plans and proposals pertaining to the Panchayati Raj was formulated in the 9th Five Year Plan.
A brief resume on the achievements of the Panchayat Cell during 9th Plan are as follows:
The sectoral allocation for the Panchayat Cell was made under the Composite Head Community Development and Panchayati Raj wherein an overall provision of Rs 2000.00 lakhs had been made during the 9th Five Year Plan. The break up of the actual achievements scheme wise is at Annexure I.
In accordance with the provisions of the 73rd Constitutional Amendment and Sikkim Panchayat Act. 1993, the elections to the Gram Panchayats and Territorial Zilla Panchayat Units were held in the year 1997. This election was preceded by the delimitation of the Gram Panchayat Units from 148 to 149 and correspondingly the number of gram Panchayat members and Zilla Panchayat members also increased to 873 and 92 respectively. This led to an increase in the administrative cost of the Panchayat Raj.
To assess the members of the Panchayats, 148 Rural Development Assistants had been appointed and posted to various Gram Panchayat Units. The establishment cost in respect of salaries and allowances of these RDAs including additional burden of arrears of 3rd Pay Revision also had to be done.
As a measure of decentralization at the initial stage, Zilla Panchayat offices had been established in the districts for the convenience of administrative and other developmental activities. For these offices, requisite manpower and administrative inputs were provided therefore the establishment costs of the four Zilla Panchayat Offices was one of the major expenditure. Around the same time, the status of the Zilla Adyakshas and Upa-Adyakshas were also elevated to the rank of Stte Minister and Deputy Minister respectively, hence the salaries, allocances and perquisites also had to be enhanced commensurately.
During the 9th Plan, the existing old Panchayat Ghar were repaired and few new ones were constructed. There were 105 existing Old Panchayat Ghars in four districts of which 30 Nos. were taken up for repairs and renovation in the 9th Plan.
Construction of 12 New Panchayat Ghar were completed during the 9th Plan. These Panchayat Ghars are to be constructed under the revised norms, which include the residence of the RDAs and the Village Library within the Panchayt Ghar itself.
One of the significant achievements during the 9th Plan was the construction of completion of Zilla Panchayat Bhawans and Panchayat Guest Houses at District Headquarters of South, West and North Districts.
Another notable step taken for up-gradation of Panchayati Raj Institutions was to provide Village Libraries within the premises of Panchayat Ghars so that the villagers and the members of the Panchayats could avail of the Library facility, which is otherwise very remotely available at the village level. Accordingly books and periodicals were procured and provided to the 159 Gram panchayat Units.
Another important facility, viz. Community Play Grounds in each constituency have also been proposed in the 9th Plan. However, this entails acquisition of land which normally takes slightly longer time as suitable lands need to be identified for the purpose. This scheme therefore is being carried over to the 10th Plan.
Trainings to the members of the Panchayat and related village level functionaries are generally imparted at the State Institute of Rural Development, Karfectar, Jorethang. However, due to inadequate funds, the budgetary provision in the past years were kept only of the establishment cost of the Institute.
The overall achievement in terms of physical and financial output during the 9th Plan may not be substantial nevertheless if is to be mentioned that basic spade works for de-centralization and devolution of powers to the Panchayati Raj Institutions in the State have been undertaken. Accordingly, the initiation of various state legislation pertaining to the Panchayat Raj; constitution of High Powered Committee; Constitution of State Finance Commission and transfer of funds to Panchayats from the core sectors could be viewed as curtain raiser for total devolution of power and strengthening of the Panchayati Raj in due course of time.
10TH FIVE YEAR PLAN (2002-07)
The implementation of plans and programs under Panchayat cell during the 9th Plan period was undertaken within the scope of 73rd Constitutional Act, which were intended to decentralize the administration for speedy attainment of economic development and social justice in the grass root level. During the 9th Plan, it was experienced that, in order to implement the above act in letter and spirit, the relevant Acts and rules have to be rendered free of any anomaly; the infrastructure need to be made strong; the financial resources of the Panchayati Raj Institutions are not only dependent on Government grants, but also adequate revenue base of the PRIs have to be worked out for which policy decisions are unavoidable. Since the entire exercise is to bring about a system of self-governance with participatory approach, the all important factor, namely, Human Resource Development is one of the key areas which needs to be given priority during 10th Plan.
As already mentioned, all the basic ground works for decentralization and devolution of powers to the Panchayats have been made more or less taken up at various levels by making necessary amendments in rules to facilitate implementation of the scheme.
The Government has also initiated necessary bill to uphold the sanctity of the old and traditional institution of Dzumsa. The efforts shall also be made to codify the old laws relating to Panchayati Raj in the coming years.
One of the important features of the measures taken for the implementation of the decentralization of power and the Panchayati Raj at the District and Gram level. The existing administrative set up of Zilla Panchayat has proposed to be further strengthen by posting of Additional Administrative and Finance Personnel.
The administrative cost in respect of salaries / honorarium for Adhyakshas, Up-Adhyakshas, Members of Zilla Panchayat, Members of Gram Panchayats, Grants-in Aid to the Gram Panchayat unit and other administrative cost in respect of Officers and staffs and other contingencies have to be met for which adequate provision needs to be earmarked.
The constitution of the Second State Finance Commission is also under process. The second Finance Commission is to further examine few key issues contained in the recommendations of the first Finance Commission.
Corollary to the reports and recommendations in respect of the decentralization of powrs, constitution of District Planning Committee is an important feature. As per the guideline and recommendation, the committee is to be headed by District Planning Officer with other Officers and staff to be drawn from other line departments. The establishment cost of the District Planning Committee will be incorporated in the provisions of the 10th Plan. The primary function of the DPC, in out context, it not only to integrate plans and proposals at the District level which entail technicalities like identification of schemes based on both short and long term local needs, ascertaining the validity of schemes so identified, resource management and scheme implementation.
COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT AND PANCHAYATI RAJ
As in the 9th Plan period, the establishment cost of the Panchayati Raj Institution in favour of grants will have to be continued in the 10th Plan period too.
Due to further delimitations of the Panchayat wards, Panchayat Units and territorial Zilla Panchayat units done prior to the recent Panchayat election held in the month of October 2002, it again increased in the number of gram panchayat ward/ territorial constituencies thereby leading to an increase in the number of members. The resultant enhancement in the establishment cost for which necessary provision have to be made in the provision for PRI in the 10th Plan period.
The revised number of Panchayat wards/ territorial constitutencies as per the recent Panchayat election held are as under:-
Gram Panchayat Units 166, Zilla Panchayat members 99 and Gram Panchayat members 905. Over and above, the salaries and allowances of the RDSs will also have to be incorporated under the scheme.
As far as the infrastructure such as Panchayat Ghars are concerned, one fourth of the existing Pancnayat Ghars have been repaired. However, these being old structures, major repairs and extension would be required so as to up-grade them to the level of new Panchayat Ghars. Furthermore, there are 166 Gram Panchayat Units and it is proposed to provide each and every GPU with a Panchayat Ghar each. Therefore, remaining Panchayat Ghars plus additional Panchayat Ghars due to increae of additional GPU will have to be constructed in the 10th Five Year Plan.
Similarly, the Village Libraries which have been set up an each Panchayat Unit will have to be augmented by the purchase of additional books, furniture and fixtures in the coming plan period.
The construction of Community Play grounds that have been earmarked in the 9th Plan will actually spill over to the 10th Plan period.
Training/Human Resource Development/State Institute of Rural Development
The successful implementation of the decentralization/ devolution of power and effective governance of the local administrative body will depend largely on administrative and managerial capacity building process. Since the exercise of power coupled with huge responsibility will be percolating right down to the grass root level, the numbers of the administrative bodies will have to be trained thoroughly for which extensive trainings, awareness and familiarization tours will have to be organized and imparted to members of Panchayat at all levels.
This aspect now has to be looked after by the State Institute of Rural Development through intensive as well as extensive training schedules for PRIs. To that extent, necessary up gradation of training facilities, such as qualified and regular resource personnel; good workshop/ conference hall; basic computer training; library; play ground; hostels and periodical exchange programme have to be provided at the SIRD.
Finance Commission Grants:
The Grants from the Finance Commission have helped to provide support to the Panchayati Raj in supplementing the basic assets created through the funds transferred to the Zilla Panchayat. As such, the grants as available from Finance Commissioner will have to be continued in the coming Plan period.
Administration set up of Panchayat Cell:
In view of the impending growth of Panchayati Raj in the State, it is but natural that a constant coordination between the Panchayats and various other sectors/ departments needs to be maintained. The function of the Panchayat Cell, as a nodal agency, should not only be restricted to the limited confine of a mere cell but will correspondingly have to assume a bigger dimension in terms of function and responsibility. As such, at certain point of time, the department have to consider restructuring and up-gradation of the present cell to that of a Directorate for the Panchayati Raj System. Also, with the decentralization of powers to Panchayati Raj Institution, the infrastructure at the Panchayat and Zilla Panchayat Zlevel needs to be strengthened manifold.
Under Panchayati Raj, the committed Expenditures are on the following:-
1. Salaries, Allowances of Adhykshas
2. Salaries, Allowances of Upa-Adhyakshas
3. Honorarium to Zilla Members (99 Nos.)
4. Honorarium to Panchayat Members (905 Nos.)
5. Administrative Expenses i.e. Salaries and Allowances and Establishment expenses of Zilla Office.
6. Grants to Gram Panchayat Units (Panchayat Fund) (166 GPU)
7. salaries and Allowances of Rural Development Assistants (RDAs) (148 Nos)
8. H.R.D Training
9. Village Libraries for all Panchayat Ghars i.e. Office Furniture.
10. Construction of New Panchayat Ghars and repairs of old and existing Panchayat Ghars.
11. Construction of Play Grounds.
12. Infrastructure development at SIRD, Karfectar.
13. Construction of Zanta Bhawan at Gangtok (Under Construction).
14. With decentralization of total powers to the Zilla and Panchayat levels, the infrastructure cost due to posting of required manpower viz. Accounts Personnel, the establishment expenses expected to enhance manifold.
Target 10th Plan
The break-up Revised Allocation under Community Development and Panchayati Raj Institution for Annual Plan (002-03) are as under:-
CONSTRUCTION OF CULTURAL CENTRE AT NAMCHI (SOLOPHU)
The scheme relates to setting up of a Tourist Destination (Pilgrimage-Cum-Cultural Centre) at Solophok in South Sikkim.
The main thrust will be to set up a rich Cultural Heritage Centre at Solophok in South Sikkim. The conceptual plan is enclosed at cp-36. The central space will be occupied by a statue of Shivaji, which will be over 100 ft in height. Different houses of worship, like Temples, Churches, Mosques, Gumpas etc. will also be constructed around this area. In addition to this, other status/ sculptures will also be taken up[ for construction. Afforestation plan will be taken up in a mass scale so as to create a quiet a quiet ambience. Meditation Centres will also be located at suitable places. There is a proposal to set up a huge open-air cultural activity center, which will cater to all the requirements of different communities. In addition to this, basic services like toilets will be placed at convenient points, along with car parks, gardens and other public utilities etc.
2. PROJECT AREA
As stated above, the area is situated at Solophok near Namchi in South District of the State. As per intimation received, as area of 4.17 hectares of forest land at Solphok Shyampani Block has already been earmarked for this programme. The formalities will be completed after payment of Compensatory Afforestation, which amounts to Rs 3,78,760.00 to the Forest Department. As of now, the total project areas envisaged in 25 acres of land of which around 10 acres of land have already been earmarked from the Forest Department as discussed. The balance 15 acres of land will be acquired form individual private landholders through the normal land acquisition procedures from the Office of the District Collector, South. For this purpose, a separate proposal is to be submitted to the Government.
The State Government has by way of supplementary grant allocated Rs 1.00 crore for the purpose of the acquisition of land at Solophok. The implementation of this project will be taken up by the Rural Development Department.
RURAL CONNECTIVITY (RURAL ROADS) & BRIDGES
Under this programme, two different activities as here under are taken up.
1. Construction of pedestrian bridges/tracks.
2. Construction of village road/ O.R.Ds under PMGSY.
CONSTRUCTION OF PEDESTRAIN BRIDGE/TRACKS
Remote villages nestled in the far-flung areas of the State and still remain unconnected to the proper transport communication network are provided with pedestrian bridges and bridle tracks under this programme. Besides inter-village linkage, these bridge tracks link the remove village to the motorable roads and the facilities centers. Mitigation of hardship and problem of inaccessibility of the rural people has ever remained a core issue requiring effective redressal. Within the framework of available resource under this programme, sincere attempts have always been made to ease out the difficulties of the inhabitants of remote villages in the State.
The various types of bridges that are constructed for rural connectivity are Log Bridge, Steel Bridge, SFB, RCC bridges. Quite a large number of such bridges have been constructed in the past but many villages in the remote pocket are still to be provided with such communication linkage. It is, as such, felt that the activity under this programme should continue further.
In addition, strengthening of weak suspension bridges will also be taken under this programme.
In addition, 12 numbers of bridges will be constructed at a total cost of 200 Lakhs sanctioned under Non-lapsable pool of resources.
RURAL CONNECTIVITY PROGRAMME UNDER PMGSY
There is an urgent need for connecting villages, small or big remaining so far isolated to the local, nodal and growth centers by way of construction of suitable motorable road conforming to the certain specified standards. Around 40% of the habitations in the country and almost 50% of the habitations in the state are to be provided with good all weather roads. The necessity for such road connectivity need not be overemphasized in terms of the benefit that will generate in the rural areas.
Launched in the year 2000-01, the program popularly called as Pradhan Mantri Gramodaya Sadak Yojana (PMGSY), a 100% CSS, is introduced in the State in the year 2000-01 itself but on account of limited time available for formulating the project proposals, no projects could be taken up in the year 2000-01 and the available resource, i.e. 13.16 cr was utilized for completion of other on going rural connectivity programme.
In the current financial year, an amount of Rs 3781 lakh has been approved for construction of 44.05 Kms long new rural roads and up-gradation of 176.33 kms of existing roads. These roads will be constructed up to WBM standard with the given fund in the first phase and their up-gradation will also be taken up subsequently with the require additional fund which will be forthcoming for such purposes.
There are numerous challenging problems associated with construction of roads in hilly areas. We may be required to adopt rational and scientific methods for generating requisite database to work out the best alternatives with respect to cost and stability with the help of various analyses carried out through computers. If fund permits, we hope to adopt Aerial photo-grammetry in future for such purpose with the help of CRRI, STA and other technical institutions. Association of the experts for geo-physical studies of the areas through which road alignments pass will also be considered in our future programme.
Bridging activity in the hill area poses unique problem. Deep and wide gorges, lack of communication, slide prone slopes, hill movement etc. make the task all the more hazardous and difficult. The choice of bridge has to be accordingly justified.
The need is also felt for evolving a strategy to maintain a perfect balance between construction activity and ecological imbalance. Equally important is the quality control during construction process. The guidelines do not permit any major repair of the road at least for a period of five years after its completion. A rigid quality control enforcement system supported by monitoring and evaluation will be devised to ensure required quality standards. All the parameters relating to specification and quality will conform to the specified standards of IRC, CRRI and other such statutory bodies. It has been proposed to have a laboratory installed in the head quarter for the various tests required to be carried out.
With such important onus placed on the Department, it is imperative that the infrastructural requirements are made available for the programme implementation. Foremost of the basic requirements is the precision survey equipment and laboratory equipment. Further, the guidelines do not provide for expenditure on account of land compensation, damage compensation, administrative charges, contingency, monitoring investigation etc. All the expenditure on account of the said items will have to be provided by the State Government.
RURAL WATER SUPPLY AND SANITATION
I. RURAL WATER SUPPLY
A. FOCUS AREA DURING 10TH PLAN
During 10th Plan, a wide spectrum of activities of the Rural Drinking Water supply programme that bear upon infrastructural development and sustainability of the system will remain in special focus. These activities in the order of their priorities are:-
B. ACHIEVEMENT DURING 9TH PLAN
I) PHYSICAL ACHIEVEMENTS
1. Habitations covered 637 Nos.
2. (Cumulative achievement up to 9th Plan: 1207 Nos.)
3. Population covered: 1.50 lakhs (approx).
4. Sustainability of Water Sources 165 Nos. (taken up from the fund provided by 11th Finance Commission, at a total cost of Rs 126.00 lakhs).
5. Water Quality:
(a) Water testing laboratory is set up in South District.
(b) Eleven Nos. of portable Water Testing Kits have been provided.
6. Human Resource Development (HRD)
Certain formative activities have been taken. HRD/IEC cell created.
7. Information Education and Communication (IEC).
Some startup activities have been taken up.
8. Management Information System (MIS)
Startup activities have been taken up. Studies on Information assessment have been carried out. Twenty-five nos. of computer hardware have been installed.
C. 10th PLAN PROJECTION
1. To liquidate all the remaining PC (Partially Covered habitations)
2. To cover newly emerged habitation
3. To setup Water Quality Testing Laboratory in remaining Three Districts
4. To install water treatment unit for 1000 Water Supply System
5. To take up source sustainability works for 300 water sources.
6. Human Resource Development Training on capacity building will be conducted for 500 villages/ habitations.
7. Information Education and Communication (IEC) IEC programme in the project mode will be extensively carried out. IEC programme will be carried out in 500 habitations/ villages.
NOTE: ARWSP provision for 10th Plan is not indicated is this is 100% CSS
D. ANNUAL ACTION PLAN 2002-03
1. Habitations: 130 Nos.
2. Population : 30000 Nos.
3. Sustainability of Water sources: 100 Nos. and 50 Nos of roof top harvesting will be taken up.
4. Water Quality:
(a) Water testing labs. Will be set up in remaining three Districts.
(b) 200 Nos. of Water sources will be provided with treatment units.
5. Human Resource Development:
100 villages shall be covered for capacity building.
6. Information, Education and Communication:
Extensive sensitisation programme will be conducted in 100 villages/habitations.
7. Reassessment of actual ground conditions to ascertain actual coverage shall be taken up for all habitations.
8. Impact study will continue to include all the remaining districts.
9. Sector reform projects will be started in North and East Districts.
II. RURAL SANITATION
A. FOCUS AREA DURING 10TH PLAN