May 3, 2016
Serving the Maa Mati Manush of Bengal – A Tale of Four Years
Trinamool Congress has been instrumental in reaching out to 8.5 crore people out of the 9.5 crore people of West Bengal in some way or another in the last four-and-a-half years, through the numerous developmental schemes undertaken for the benefit of the people.
Here are some of the development initiatives of the Maa Mati Manush Government:
Under this scheme, more than eight crore people of the State are getting rice at Rs 2 per kg, including those holding old ration cards. Another 50 lakh people are now getting foodgrains at half the present price.
This programme, aimed at checking school dropouts among girls and stopping early marriage of girls, is now acclaimed internationally. Thirty-three lakh girls in Bengal are registered under Kanyashree.
To ensure all students reach their school, even from faraway areas, the Trinamool Congress Government has undertaken this project to distribute bicycles amongst them. Out of the targeted 40 lakh bicycles for distributing, 25 lakh have already been distributed across the State.
Students studying in classes from V to VIII and belonging to SC or ST communities are being given scholarships. More than 13.4 lakh SC community students and 2.4 lakh ST community students have already benefitted; around 9.5 lakh more students are going to benefit in the near future.
Around one lakh youth are getting allowances under this scheme.
In the past four-and-a-half years, around 68 lakh people have been provided with work. Around 98 crore man-days have been created.
Scholarships and loans to people from minority communities
In the last four-and-a-half years, more than one crore students belonging to minority communities have received scholarships worth more than Rs 1,921 crore. More than four lakh youth belonging to minority communities have received loans to the tune of more than Rs 700 crore, a record in the country.
Lok Prasar Prakalpa
To revive the cultural heritage of the State, the Trinamool Congress Government has started this scheme to encourage and utilise the artistes practising different forms of folk culture. Sixty thousand artistes are registered and have benefitted from this scheme.
Fair-Price Medicine Shops
In the last four-and-a-half years, 109 fair-price medicine shops have been opened across the State providing discounts from 40% to 70%. More than two crore people have benefitted from discounts of over Rs 585 crore. The project has been elected as a model project. Seventy-nine faire-price diagnostic centres have also been opened, providing a discounts of more than 50% on tests.
Multi Super-speciality Hospitals
Out of the targeted 41 multi super-hospitals, 21 have already started functioning. The remaining are on the verge of completion.
100 Days’ Work Scheme
In the last four-and-a-half years, Rs 17,589 crore has been spent to create 8,451 man-days.
In the last four-and-a-half years, the State has provided bank loans worth Rs 91,572 crore to the MSME sector, the highest in the country.
The State has been the recipient of the Krishi Karman Award four years in a row. The incomes of farmers have increased from Rs 93,000 (2011) to Rs 1.63 lakh (2016) per annum.
Mission Nirmal Bangla
In the past two-and-a-half years, 26 lakh toilets have been built. During the financial year 2014-15, 8.5 lakh toilets were built which made the State reach the top spot in the country.
Comparative figures: Bengal far ahead
|Gross Value-Added Growth||Bengal 12.02%||India 7.3%*|
|Per Capita Income||Bengal 12.84%||India 6.1%**|
|Increase in Industry||Bengal 10.59%||India 7.3%*|
|Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery||Bengal 5.55%||India 1.1%*|
|Service Sector||Bengal 13.99%||India 9.2 %*|
* 2015-16 figures
In the last four years
- State’s tax collection has doubled
- State’s Capital Expenditure (Asset Creating) has increased by six times
- State’s Agriculture and Rural Development Expenditure has increased by five-and-a-half times
- State’s Physical Infrastructure Expenditure has more than trebled
- State’s Plan Expenditure has increased by more than three times
- State’s Social Infrastructure Expenditure has trebled
Biswa Bangla: Bengal’s schemes now globally recognised
Shaking away the shackles of the past, West Bengal has now emerged as a model of not only India but the entire world.
Several of the schemes and projects initiated by the Trinamool Congress Government in West Bengal have gained international recognition, thus paving the way for Biswa Bangla.
The Kanyashree Prakalpa, or ‘Kanyashree Scheme,’ is one of the flagship schemes of the Government, which has gained widespread recognition. After being launched on October 1, 2013, in about a year-and-a-half, more than 22 lakh girls have registered under the scheme. The government plans to extend the benefit to 40 lakh girls in the next two years.
UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund) has become a partner of the West Bengal Government for the implementation of the Kanyashree Scheme. The partnership between UNICEF and the West Bengal Government is not a superficial involvement but a technical partnership. The Department for International Development (DFID), United Kingdom and UNICEF had together selected the scheme for presentation at the Girl Summit 2014 in London.
Nadia district gets UN award
Another scheme to get international recognition is the Sabar Souchagar, or ‘Toilets For All’ project, for the district of Nadia. It won the first place in the Asia-Pacific region in the ‘Improving the Delivery of Public Services’ category at the United Nations Public Service Award 2015.
The project has also been selected by Loughborough University, UK as an inspiring model for eliminating open defecation, and it is to be presented at the WEDC International Conference in July.
Bengal Panchayati Raj
The project to strengthen the panchayati raj institutions in West Bengal has been immensely praised by World Bank. According to the World Bank report presented in 2013, the performance of gram panchayats improved substantially on all fronts.
As a result, out of 1,000 gram panchayats from nine project districts, 792 qualified for receiving the block grant of financial year 2013-14, based on an independent annual performance assessment undertaken between May and September 2012.
The World Bank and the German organisation, Global Alliances for Social Protection (known by its German acronym, GIZ) have lauded West Bengal’s progress in executing the Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY). The scheme provides cashless treatment benefits of up to Rs 30,000 per family annually through a network of 1,043 hospitals throughout the State.
West Bengal was invited to share its experiences in social sector insurance in a global learning forum in Berlin in June 2015, organised by the World Bank and GIZ.