“Rupkathar Gaon Project” – A Holistic Rural Transformation Initiative.
Project Period: April 2017 – March 2020.
Project Sponsor: Assam Gas Company Limited (AGCL), Duliajan, under their CSR programme.
Project Implementer: Rashtriya Gramin Vikas Nidhi (RGVN), Guwahati, Assam.
Project Location: No. 1 Chapatoli Village, Dibrugarh District, Assam.
About the Project:
The Mission of AGCL’s “Rupkathar Gaon Project” is to formulate and implement socio-economic interventions that would holistically transform rural communities by enhancing their Agriculture-based Livelihood Opportunities & Incomes, as well as their overall Quality of Life.
This project is directed at holistic transformation of villages, of which No. 1 Chapatoli Gaon was selected to be the first, with primary focus on the following:
- Provision/Upgrade of Civic Amenities and Community Infrastructure; and
- Enhancement of Agriculture-based Livelihood Opportunities & Incomes, and Adoption of Appropriate Agriculture-related Technologies & Farm Mechanization.
Civic Amenities and Infrastructure:
- Sanitation: 258 high-quality & spacious individual household toilets have been provided and awareness camps were conducted on “Sanitation and Health & Hygiene”. 1 Chapatoli is now an Open Defecation Free (ODF) village, with all 263 households having their own sanitary toilets.
- Safe Drinking Water: 3 Solar-powered, Filtered Drinking Water Supply Systems have been commissioned to cater to the drinking water requirements of the entire 263-household village.
- Village Schools: 2 nos. Schools have been Renovated/Rebuilt; and Solar-powered Lights & Fans have been provided in both.
- Village Community Centres: 2 nos. Community Centres have been Renovated/Rebuilt. Additionally, a Grid-electricity Connection and Lights & Fans have been provided in one of the aforementioned Community Centres.
Agriculture-based Livelihood Opportunities & Incomes:
- Kharif/Winter Paddy Cultivation: Significant increase Yields & Farmer Incomes achieved for Kharif/Winter Paddy Cultivation through Training & Deployment of SRI Technology; Farm Mechanization & adoption of Best Practices in Cultivation; Provision of Quality Seeds, Fertilizers, Nutrients, Pest-control & Irrigation Facilities; and Crop Monitoring & Technical Support.
- Vegetable Cultivation: Major Enhancement in Farmer Incomes achieved by successful Introduction of medium-scale Cultivation of Summer & Winter Vegetables (prior to this Project, vegetable cultivation in the village was confined to a few Kitchen Gardens for household consumption). This was achieved by Adoption of Best Practices in Cultivation; Provision of Quality Seeds, Fertilizers, Nutrients, Pest-control & Irrigation Facilities; and Crop Monitoring & Technical Support.
- 6 nos. Vermicompost Production Units established in “Entrepreneurship-Mode”. All these Units are now commercially viable and financially self-sufficient, and they cater to the vermicompost requirements of No. 1 Chapatoli Gaon & nearby villages.
- 3 nos. Vegetable Nurseries with Green-houses established in “Entrepreneurship-Mode”. All these Nurseries are now commercially viable and financially self-sufficient, and they cater to the demand for vegetable saplings in No. 1 Chapatoli Gaon.
- 12 nos. Mushroom Production Units established in “SHG- Entrepreneurship Mode” (each with 4 – 5 Women Members). All these Units are now commercially viable and financially self-sufficient, and they cater to the demand for mushrooms in No. 1 Chapatoli Gaon & nearby villages/towns.
- 2 nos. Borewells at strategic locations, and 3 Diesel Pumps provided to facilitate Irrigation from Ground-water & Surface-water sources.
Adoption of Appropriate Agriculture-related Technologies & Farm Mechanization:
- Farm Mechanization: An Agro Service Centre (“Krishak Mitra”) has been established in No. 1 Chapatoli Gaon to cater to various agriculture-related needs of Farmers in respect of: (a) Farm Equipment (Tractor, Power-tiller, Paddy Transplanter, Paddy Reaper, Paddy Thresher); (b) Farm Inputs (Seeds, Fertilizers, Nutrients, Pesticides); (c) Implements & Tools (Pumps, Weeders & Hoes, Sprayers, etc.). Easy access to these items, which are being made available to Farmers on a “Pay-for-Use Basis”, should significantly reduce Cultivation Costs, increase Farm Productivity, and facilitate Adoption of Best Practices in Cultivation.
- Neem Tree Plantation: 150 ‘Neem’ saplings have been planted at various locations in the village to enable local production of Neem-based fertilizer & pesticide in the long term. The Neem plantation will also have a positive environmental impact.
- Local marketplace (Mini-Mandi): A Vegetable Market Shed was set up to partially cater to limited & seasonal local demand; and to provide a “mini-Mandi” for Traders to procure local produce.