CHANDIGARH: The Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal today fine-tuned an ambitious Rs. 29,781.55 crore plan for time bound integrated development of all 12,673 villages within next five years.
Accompanied by Surjit Singh Rakhra, Rural Development and Panchayats Minister and Bikram Singh Majithia, Revenue Minister, Badal today fine-tuned the ambitious program drawn up by the department that included underground small bore size sewerage system, concrete lanes and pavements, surface drains, cleaning and renovation of village ponds, construction and renovation of ‘Panchayat Ghars’ besides strengthening the existing assets of Panchayats.
Badal said that SAD-BJP Government was committed to improve quality of life in Rural Areas to check growing migration of Rural People to Urban Areas. He said that his focus was targeting development for the benefit of deprived population including marginal farmers, landless labourers besides Scheduled Castes and Backward Classes.
He said that this plan has been drawn up for focused approach encompassing development of physical and economic infrastructure ensuring accelerated delivery of quality services in Rural Areas besides guiding their development to next state of integrated development.
He said that this plan and envisaged provision of concrete streets up to Firnis, provision of low costs small bore size sewerage system in every village and renovation and rejuvenation of village ponds. He said that 62.51% of population of Punjab estimating 2,77,04,236 were living in rural areas and all 12,673 villages in 145 blocks have been divided into five phases and integrated development of one village would be ensured in one go.
Rakhra participating in the meeting informed that according to the initial estimation on the basis of state-wide survey conducted by the department, it has been calculated that Rs. 1,36,80,000 per village would be required for small bore size sewerage system, whereas Rs. 68,40,000 per village would be needed for making all lanes of villages with concrete and providing surface drains.
He said that as per estimated drawn by the department Rs. 2.35 crore would be required for every village of the state and 12,673 villages would be covered at the cost of Rs. 29,781.55 crore.
Stressing upon the need for fine tuning the estimates of Rural Development Department from a professional infrastructure company, Badal suggested that expert civil engineers be associated to recheck the estimates in select blocks and services of private infrastructure companies be utilised for laying concrete lanes with the help of premix automatic concrete plants to ensure total quality control of the project.
Emphasising the need for financial and performance audit of every village panchayat after every six months, Badal asked Satish Chandra, Principal Secretary Finance to tie up with professional audit companies and submit the proposal within 30 days. He said that the suggestion of hiring charted companies and consultants could also be studied by department.
The meeting also discussed the projects being executed under NABARD, BRGF, BADP, Kandi Area Development Program, NREGA, Total Sanitation Campaign, NRI Mission Program, MPLAD Program, One Time Additional Central Assistance Program and World Bank Aided Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Project.
The meeting also discussed the funding pattern of this ambitious Rural Development Project besides phasing of the project in five years. The flow of funds for every village was worked out in the meeting. Prominent amongst those present in the meeting included Satish Chandra, Principal Secretary Finance and Planning, Mandeep Singh Sandhu, Principal Secretary Rural Development, Balwinder Singh Multani, Director Rural Devlopment and Panchayats, Manvesh Singh Sidhu, Ajay Kumar Mahajan (both Special Principal Secretaries to Deputy CM).