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Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission

Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM) has been launched to bring about economic, social and infrastructure development in rural areas. It is an ambitious scheme to transform rural areas into   economically, socially and physically sustainable spaces. SPMRM was announced in the Union Budget 2014-15 following the success of Rurban development model of urbanization of the rural areas in the state of Gujarat through which people living in the rural areas have been provided efficient civic infrastructure and associate services. It may be added here that the word rurban (rural+urban),  as  the main theme of   the scheme , refers to a geographic  region which  retains  its essential rural features while adopting the economic characteristics and lifestyles of an urban area .It was geographical thinker Sorokin who in his Rural-Urban Sociology (1929), used  the term “rurbanization”. It was Parson who further elaborated the concept of “rurbanization” in his book – Essays in Sociological Theory in 1949. To simplify the meaning of rurban in socio-geographical context rurban communities are those who in terms of styles of life and the standard of living occupy the space somewhere between the rural and the urban. Despite being originally rural they are highly affected by the urbanization process. A number of factors triggers this rurbanization process which may be caused by urban expansion or rural migration. In nutshell, ameliorating the lot of rural population by provisioning the basic amenities is the top priority of this scheme.

The Objective of this mission are to:

  • Stimulate local economic development, improve basic services and create well planned Rurban clusters.
  • Enable cluster based development with a rural soul and social amenities, along with focus on equity and inclusiveness.

Under the SPMRM, a cluster of 15-20 villages with 30 to 40 lakh population would be referred to as rurban. These clusters–planned to be geographically contiguous Gram Panchayats – will have 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. For all practical purposes, clusters of a village would follow administrative convergence units of Gram Panchayats.  The scheme endeavours to bring about overall regional growth. To achieve the goal of  balanced regional development in the country the mission has to  strengthen rural  areas and thus  has to take the load off the urban spaces which have been  overburdened with the rush of rural populace towards cities in search of better life  and opportunities .

The Mission focuses on developing rural growth clusters in all States and UTs,-  thus it would aim to speedily  spur  the process of growth and development in the targeted regions. The provisioning of economic activities, giving push to the creation of skills & local entrepreneurship and commitment to make available sustainable infrastructure amenities will work as driving force for the development of   these clusters .The vision to be realized through the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission is to develop a cluster of Smart Villages. The mission endeavours to develop 300 such Rurban growth clusters over the next 3 years across the country.

To reach the optimum level of development under SPRM, fourteen components have been laid down/suggested as desirable for the cluster are as listed below—

  • Skill development training linked to economic activities
  • Agro Processing/Agri Services/Storage and Warehousing
  • Digital Literacy
  • Sanitation
  • 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

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