Srinagar,Nov 14: In a historic development, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to unveil a groundbreaking Rs 24,000 crore scheme, the Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG) Development Mission, on 'Janjatiya Gaurav Divas' in Jharkhand. The tribal population expresses joy, anticipating that this initiative will complement the ongoing efforts of the LG administration for their well-being.
This mission, announced in the 2023-24 budget, aims to comprehensively address the socio-economic conditions of Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG). Scheduled to be launched on November 15, the mission is poised to be a historic first-of-its-kind initiative.
The PVTG, numbering around 28 lakhs and residing in 22,544 villages across 220 districts in 18 states and Union territories, often inhabit remote and inaccessible areas. The mission seeks to provide them with essential facilities like road and telecom connectivity, electricity, housing, clean water, sanitation, improved education, healthcare, and sustainable livelihood opportunities.
In a parallel endeavour, the Jammu and Kashmir government, under the leadership of Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, has been actively engaged in tribal welfare initiatives. In a significant move on September 13, individual and community rights certificates were handed over to beneficiaries of Gujjar, Bakarwal, and Gaddi Sippi communities under the Forest Rights Act (FRA), 2006.
This historic step not only granted forest land rights but also extended rights over minor forest produce. The government, in collaboration with the Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Limited, is set to establish infrastructure for collection, value addition, packaging, and distribution.
To further enhance the educational empowerment of tribal children, the government initiated a project to transform 200 schools into Smart Schools in tribal areas at a cost of Rs 40 crores. This initiative, aimed at developing scientific temper and reducing the drop-out rate, is scheduled for completion by March 2022.
In total, the J&K administration is investing approximately Rs 104 crore to strengthen school infrastructure in tribal areas, modernize hostels, and establish new hostels. Additionally, two Eklavya Model Schools have been set up in Rajouri, with others in Anantnag, Poonch, Kulgam, and Bandipora.
Economic empowerment of the tribal population is also a key focus. The Tribal Affairs Department has launched a plan for the establishment of Milk Villages, Milk Chilling Plants, and Milk Product Processing facilities in tribal villages. This initiative aims to support milk production, create employment for tribal youth, and enhance infrastructure.
With scholarships, professional courses, and various economic empowerment programs, the Jammu and Kashmir government, under the leadership of Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, is striving to bring about positive transformations in the lives of tribal communities, marking a significant chapter in the region's pursuit of social equality and development.