Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 16 September 2015 approved the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM).
The Mission approved with an outlay of 5142.08 crore rupees is a bid to transform rural areas to economically, socially and physically sustainable spaces.
The mission aims to create 300 Rurban growth clusters over the next 3 years, across the country.
Main elements of Rurban Mission
- Development of Rurban growth clusters, which have latent potential for growth, in all States and UTs to trigger overall development in the region. These clusters are essentially Smart Villages.
- Rural growth clusters would be developed by provisioning of economic activities, developing skills & local entrepreneurship and providing infrastructure amenities.
- Further, these clusters would be well delineated areas with planned layouts, which would be duly notified by the State/UTs. These plans would be finally integrated with the District Plans/Master Plans as the case may be.
- The States would prepare Integrated Cluster Action Plans for Rurban Clusters in accordance with the Framework for Implementation prepared by the Union Ministry of Rural Development.
- The clusters will be geographically contiguous to Gram Panchayats with a population of about 25000 to 50000 in plain and coastal areas and a population of 5000 to 15000 in desert, hilly or tribal areas.
- There would be a separate approach for selection of clusters in Tribal and Non-Tribal Districts.
- As far as practicable, clusters of village would follow administrative convergence units of Gram Panchayats.
- The Mission envisages institutional arrangements both at the State and Center to ensure smooth implementation of the Mission.
- The Mission also has an Innovation budget towards facilitating research, development and capacity building.
Funding of the Mission
- The funding for Rurban Clusters will be through various schemes of the Government converged into the cluster.
- The SPMRM will provide an additional funding support of up to 30 percent of the project cost per cluster as Critical Gap Funding (CGF) as Central Share to enable development of such Rurban clusters.
- In addition to the Critical Gap Funding, proactive steps have been taken to ensure the success of the mission with adequate budget provisions for supporting the State Government towards project development, capacity building and other institutional arrangements at the state level.
Fourteen components of Rurban growth clusters
To ensure an optimum level of development, fourteen components have been suggested as desirable for the cluster. These include
- Skill development training linked to economic activities
- Agro Processing/Agri Services/Storage and Warehousing
- Digital Literacy
- Provision of piped water supply
- Solid and liquid waste management
- Village streets and drains
- Street lights
- Fully equipped mobile health unit
- Upgrading school /higher education facilities
- Inter-village road connectivity
- Citizen Service Centres- for electronic delivery of citizen centric services/e-gram connectivity
- Public transport
- LPG gas connections
The scheme through development of rurban growth clusters aimed at catalyzing overall regional growth, would thus simultaneously benefit the rural as well as urban areas of the country, by achieving twin objectives of strengthening rural areas and de burdening the urban areas hence leading to balanced regional development and growth of the country.
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