In search of reasons behind migration, Uttarakhand panel to scour 968 ‘ghost villages’
Rural Development and Migration Commission’s team would submit its first preliminary report on migration to the government in the next eight monthsdehradun Updated: Oct 17, 2017 20:57 IST
Calling forced migration as a “highly complex issue”, Rural Development and Migration Commission (RDMC) vice-chairperson SS Negi said he would follow a bottom up approach to study the problem in all its dimensions for coming up with lasting solutions.
“My team and I will undertake a study tour of all the 968 uninhabited villages, which will start immediately after Diwali,” said the former Director General (DG), Forest, who took up his new assignment on October 3. “The idea is to study migration in its entirety so that we come up with durable solutions instead of solutions imposed by planners, which hardly work as far as such issues are concerned.”
The first preliminary report on migration would be submitted to the government in the next eight months.
Negi said he and his team would also visit the hill and plain areas where migration had not taken place. “In such areas, migration has not taken place because of the spirit of entrepreneurship which helped locals earn livelihood with minimal government support,” he said, adding that aspect was brought to his notice by chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat during a meeting on Tuesday.
“A comparative study of the areas where migration took place and the areas that has witnessed no relocation owing to people’s entrepreneurship would show us a way forward,” Negi said. “Such examples will show us the way to check forced migration both in the hilly and plain areas or forced rural-urban migration.”
The success stories of people who resolved the livelihood issues by developing home stay facilities or growing off season vegetables would be documented. “Such stories will serve as an example for the people how entrepreneurship can take things forward instead of relocating or depending on the government for resolving livelihood issues.”
“We are trying to find a solution to forced migration by adopting a multi-pronged approach,” he said, suggesting that migration was the result of a host of complex problems such as unemployment, improper health and educational facilities or problems relating to farm and horticulture.
“Migration or forced migration is the upshot of so many diverse problems that no single solution will apply to all areas,” Negi said, adding that its solutions would have to be “site, block and village specific.”
He asserted the problem of forced migration was not specific just to hill districts as the impression was. “It is a problem that touches all the 13 districts, including the three plain districts.”
Out of the 968 uninhabited villages he and his team would study, some 94 villages fell in one plain district of Haridwar. “Then there is the problem of rural-urban migration.” The complex reasons leading to migration and forced migration make it necessary for adopting a bottom up approach to study it in all its dimensions, he said.
“Which is why, we plan to have on board experts in agriculture, horticulture, health, education, rural development and grassroots level social workers etc. Besides, we will also consult economists so that site specific solutions to a problem like migration can be found.”