New Delhi: As promised in the 2019 election manifesto, the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government has hit the ground running to complete 75 milestone projects by June 2022, just a few months before the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence.
The Central ministries have prepared a 1,000-day agenda for action with clear timelines for major milestones and related tasks. On top of the welfare agenda, the plan is to ensure a pucca house for every family. According to the documents reviewed by Firstpost, the government has planned two crore homes to be completed by June 2022.
The deadlines for this has been divided into three parts — 70 lakh homes by June 2020; 70 lakh homes by June 2021; and 60 lakh homes by June 2022. A total of 4.2 lakh landless beneficiaries have also been identified across the country and the government is planning to provide them with land for construction of the house. The design of these homes will be region-specific to make them socio-culturally acceptable while adopting disaster resilience technology.
The government’s aim is to construct all-weather connectivity roads to every village by June 2022. The action plan has to be prepared by 2 October 2019. During the first five years of the newly-elected NDA government, 130-135 kilometres road length was constructed and at least 92 percent eligible and feasible areas have been covered.
Now, the state governments have been asked to do a comprehensive need analysis by 15 August 2019. For the financial inclusion, the government is preparing an action plan to ensure banking facilities within five kilometers of habitation and increase digital transactions and end-to-end digitised government process in welfare schemes. In order to meet the agriculture-related milestone, the government plans to increase incomes of households through individual beneficiary schemes of MNREGA and diversified livelihoods through national rural livelihood mission.
Poor households in the hinterlands are more vulnerable to loss of assets or unstable income sources. In order to provide them with assistance in such emergencies, the government will ask the states to dedicate at least two staff per block so that they can be enrolled and covered under the Centre’s insurance scheme.
The government is gearing up to have 1,000 farmer producer organisations, which will provide better market opportunities for rural products. Ministry of agriculture and other stakeholders will work on pension scheme for small and marginal farmers above 60 years of age.
The action plan — New India 2022 Fostering Higher Inclusive Growth — reviewed by Firstpost said that the government will work on comprehensive social security for unorganised laborers with wider coverage under a national social assistance scheme. An assessment conducted by the government in December last year had said that the pension amount provided by the central government is inadequate under the national social assistance scheme and states top up the pension amount with varying additional amounts, which deeply underlines the need for the central contribution to be enhanced from the present level.
The plan of skill development opportunities for differently-abled and young widows is ready for rollout and expansion of pension coverage for above 60 years is being worked out. There will be a coordinated effort for skill development plan with the help of Ministry of Skill Development, Ministry of Labour and Ministry of Human Resource Development.
In the 75 milestones for India at 75, the government is working on agenda to ensure a toilet in every home and every village to be equipped with solid and liquid waste management using MNREGA funds in conjunction with other state resources. The tagline for government agenda is to “Promote diverse models for waste to wealth.”
As for economic milestone in the hinterland is concerned, the government action plan includes proposals to tap nano enterprises of self-help groups in villages for planned development and creation of at least 1000 clusters for infrastructure and economic activity. This includes clusters around tourism, micro enterprises, handlooms, handicrafts, agriculture processing units, education, skills, manufacturing, warehousing and central government will provide additional funding for the projects.
There are about 6 crore women employed through self-help groups and over Rs 81, 000 crore has been disbursed till date. Documents said since a significant decline in chronic poverty, change in the structure of the country’s rural economy is a must to achieve the targets. It said that half of the national income and more than two-thirds of total employment is generated in rural areas. It further added that the country’s hinterland contributes about half of the manufacturing and construction sectors output and one-quarter of the service sectors output in the country. Growing demand for goods and services in the hinterland — automobiles, two-wheelers, fast-moving consumer goods, etc have opened up new opportunities.
New India 2022
In its various agenda and action plan, the government has unveiled the targets before the 75th Independence Day. Documents said the government is looking at 9 percent to 10 percent growth rate with higher investment rates and exports and double growth rate for the manufacturing sector.
The government also aims to increase female labour force participation to at least 30 percent; double farmer’s income and give better access to credit at a reasonable cost for those presently excluded. The plan has been prepared to achieve 175 GW of renewable energy and reduce imports of oil and gas by 10 percent and complete Bharatmala Phase-1 and double national highway roads by 2022.
Another agenda is ensuring secondary and tertiary care under Ayushman Bharat and increasing availability of paramedics and doctors and also reducing by 15 percent out-of-pocket expenditure in health through publicly financed health insurance and quality primary care.
In the education sector, documents revealed, the government plan is to bridge the gender gap in higher education with linkages to work opportunities by 2022. The motto is ‘all children in school and all children learning.’
The 1000-day action plan is also focused on faster socio-economic development of deprived communities, proposals to balance regional development with thrust on economic activities in the northeast region. There are reforms in the offing in legal, judicial, civil services and police system along with the action plan for modernising city governance for urban transformation. The government plan is to ensure physical digital connectivity across all states, districts and gram panchayats.