Wednesday, May 12, 2021
Home Opinions 2017 must be remembered for this life changing reform which impacts real Bharat

2017 must be remembered for this life changing reform which impacts real Bharat

The above tweet from Dr. Dinesh Arora, Founder Head of Rural Electrification Mission, which shows 7 people carrying an electricity pole and a 7-8 year old kid running with them, somewhere in the hills of Assam caught my imagination. I was that boy, back in 1982-83 in my remote village in Kerala – Karnataka border, running with the villagers as they carried electricity poles, dug pits to erect them and pulled the power lines from pole to pole. We kids used to look at KSEB (Kerala State Electricity Board) linemen, overseers and engineers as people who had descended from heaven to bless us with light!

It is not easy for most city dwellers and elitists of today to understand what transformation having access to electricity can bring to village houses and farms. I still remember me and my 3 elder siblings sitting next to the kerosene lamp reading and doing our homework. After one hour, our entire body would smell of kerosene smoke and inside the nostrils, you could easily notice a thick black layer of soot. You bend a little more while you read, purr… the tip of our hair would touch the flame and give out dirty keratin burning smell. Come rainy season, thousands of flies and insects would descend around the lamp and make our lives hell.

It is a shame that what I went through as a child 35 years back is the story crores of households even today, thanks to the family that ruled the nation for most of the last 70 years. The apathy of these rulers towards the real “gareeb” of this nation is abominable. They had schemes for everything under the sun but in reality, nothing happened on the ground.

This is why out of all the work that is being done by Narendra Modi government, the one that has caught my imagination is Grameen Vidyutikaran Mission under Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Grama Jyoti Yojana (DDUGJY). Anyone with little exposure the rural areas, especially the far-flung villages would know that the real task is to get the poles, power lines & transformers in and have the first few houses electrified. Once that is done, it is not a herculean task to electrify other houses in the village if the intent is there.

As on April 1, 2015, nearly 68 years after India’s independence, 18,452 villages, i.e. about 3% of all villages in this country had no access electricity, a basic amenity. Modi and his Power Minister in 2015, Piyush Goyal, seem to have taken this situation as a challenge. I have been tracking the progress under DDUGJY from the day the Garv App and the website www.garv.gov.in were launched and the progress made has been commendable.

The first thing that power ministry seemed to have done was to collect actual data on the current situation. Once the current situation was understood, the ministry seemed to have worked closely with different state governments (of different political parties) on rolling out the plan. There was complete data transparency up to the village level. Names and contact numbers of Grameen Vidyut Abhiyantas (GVAs, who played a key role in rollout) were accessible to everyone. The central government also successfully kept the motivation levels of the GVAs high.

The outcome is there for everyone to see. As I write this article, Bihar has just announced that all of its 2747 unelectrified villages have been electrified today. The race to zero that started from 18,452 has now reached 1,635 (as on December 27, 2017). The table below gives the progress made so far.

Well begun is half done. Next challenge for Modi government would be to provide access electricity to every rural household under Saubhagya scheme by 2019. As on October 11, 2017, of the 18.02 crore rural households, a shocking 4.13 crore (23%) have no access to electricity. Can the success of the step 1 be replicated in step 2?

One may love or hate Narendra Modi for his own reason, you have to give him the credit for changing the status quo when it comes to changing lives of crores of “gareeb” people of this country. He and his Government may be credited with various reforms, such as GST or Insolvency Code or other actions, but in my view, this one scheme trumps them all. While other schemes may improve the situation for people who already have it easy, rural electrification is one scheme which simplifies life for those, who are suffering the most.

They are the ones who do not have any lobbying bodies. They are the ones who do not get called on prime time debates. They are the ones who are living decades behind their counterparts in cities. They are the real India, they are Bharat. For every village that gets connected today, 100s of kids will get an opportunity to give a fair shot at life, like me. To me, this is “Antyodaya” in the real sense.

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Related Articles

Trending now

Rani Ahilyabai Holkar’s family writes to Maha CM, objects to Sanjay Raut’s attempt to compare Mamata Banerjee with the great queen

In a strong reply, the letter by the Holkars of Indore criticised the editorial piece by Raut and said that it is shameful to compare great leaders of India to today’s mere politicians for petty gains.

Here are 12 instances when the leftist media fanned fear against vaccines just before the second Covid wave

Leftist propaganda websites hosted articles that raised doubts about Indian vaccines, thereby fuelling vaccine hesitancy in the months leading to the resurgent coronavirus outbreak.

Israel’s ‘Iron Dome’ Air Defence System: What is it and how does it work

To counter the low-cost warfare initiated by Hamas, the Israel Defence Forces has activated its state-of-art air defence system - 'Iron Dome' to protect its civilian population from the barrage of rockets.

‘No commode’ claims Pappu Yadav who is in jail for flouting COVID norms, complaints of mosquitoes biting him all night

Fearing that Pappu Yadav might become more popular and become a hero-like figure, RJD leaders are condemning this as 'drama'.

Israeli forces kill Islamic Jihad and Hamas leaders in targeted strikes amid increased tension between Israel and Palestine

Two top Hamas leaders, three Islamic Jihad terrorists killed, several injured in targeted strikes by Israel Defence Forces

Congress leader Ali Mehdi wishes the destruction of Israel hours after terror outfit Hamas launches massive air strikes against Jewish nation

Delhi Congress VP's tweet wishing destruction of Israel comes at a time after the Jewish nation came under attack by the Palestinian terror organisation Hamas

Recently Popular

Israel spy agency Mossad’s parody account pokes fun at Bollywood entertainer Swara Bhasker over her ‘#FreePalestine’ campaign

Swara Bhasker had posted a tweet calling Israel apartheid and terrorist state following the clashes at the Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem

As Netizens trend #ArrestMunmunDutta, the actor apologises, says she was misinformed and did not intend to use casteist slur: Details

Actor Munmun Dutta, most famously known for playing the character of 'Babita Ji in 'Taarak Mehta ka Ooltah Chasmah', today posted a statement on Twitter, apologising

NCP supremo Sharad Pawar believes he committed a big mistake by making Uddhav Thackeray the CM of Maharashtra: Report

A report published in Marathi daily Tarun Bharat said that Sharad Pawar conveyed to Sanjay Raut that he made a big mistake by making Uddhav Thackeray the chief minister of Maharashtra.

Watch: Israel’s Iron Dome intercepts hundreds of rockets launched by the Palestinian terror group Hamas

The high-tech 'Iron Dome' is a short-range air-defence system designed to intercept rockets, artillery, and mortars. The surface-to-air missile system has been deployed by Israel Defence Forces since 2011 and has helped reduce casualties from rocket attacks against Israeli cities.

BMC chief explains why it is not the Modi govt but the states that need to be blamed for the oxygen crisis

BMC chief said that mismanagement of states is responsible for the oxygen crisis and increased number of SOS calls

Cartoonist gets Twitter notice for a caricature of Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray: Details

The cartoonist took to Twitter to share the copy of the notice he received from the legal department of the microblogging website.
- Advertisement -

 

Connect with us

254,927FansLike
542,160FollowersFollow
24,300SubscribersSubscribe