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MP likely to get DPIP extension

AFTER INITIAL hiccups, the World Bank- aided District Poverty Initiative Project (DPIP) has progressed so well that Madhya Pradesh is vying with Andhra Pradesh to emerge as best State in the project implementation.

india Updated: May 27, 2006 14:37 IST

AFTER INITIAL hiccups, the World Bank- aided District Poverty Initiative Project (DPIP) has progressed so well that Madhya Pradesh is vying with Andhra Pradesh to emerge as best State in the project implementation.

Expressing satisfaction over the DPIP implementation, the visiting World Bank team representative Martien Van Nieuwkoop hinted at extension of the project for second phase after completion of the first phase next year.   

The MP Government has already requested the Union Government for sanctioning the second phase, informed Panchayat and Rural Development Minister Narendra Singh Tomar.

According to DPIP project director Ravindra Pastore, the State has already utilised Rs 391 crore of the total Rs 599 crore of the project till April 2006 and is all set to utilise the remaining amount within the stipulated time.

However, the World Bank team felt that the project could have been more effective in addressing poverty in the 14 districts it is being implemented, had more areas been covered under it.

“The project should have been designed in such a manner that it benefited maximum number of people living in these districts,” World Bank representative Martien Van Nieuwkoop told newsmen at the Mantralaya today. 

The Rural Development Minister agreed with the WB representative’s contention, adding, “in the second phase, the State Government would implement the project in 20 districts and along with the existing 3,000 villages, people of additional 19,000 villages would be covered.”

Referring to his visit in MP’s districts, Martien Van Nieuwkoop said it is good to see people getting what they want. “One of their aspirations to become self-reliant appears to be fulfilled as not only are they running their Common Interest Groups (CIGs) successfully but also learning marketing tactics to sustain themselves after the project completed in June next year,” he observed.

During the visit, the team members saw income generating activities taken up by the CIGs under the project and improvement in their living standard, he added.

The lead rural development specialist of World Bank Martien said that after initial hiccups the State has improved its performance a lot and is competing with Andhra Pradesh for the status of best State. This project is being implemented in AP, Rajasthan, MP, Tamil Nadu and Chhattisgarh.

The biggest challenge before the World Bank and the State Government, according to Martien, is to it make CIGs more sustainable by providing market linkages and also to teach the rural people about the ways to face challenges of market forces.  

Pastore informed that efforts are on to make either a federation or a company of the CIGs. “Sixteen such companies have already been set up to make them more sustainable,” he added. The CIGs have also established linkages with public and private partners. 

Impact assessment of the DPIP in the State has been assigned to the voluntary organisation New Concept, which will highlight success stories of the project. “The NGO is preparing assessment report,” the WB expert revealed.