Hindustan Times, Jaipur, 2 March 2007

EXPERTS, AT the State-level launch and brainstorming workshop titled ‘Promoting Greater Role of the Panchayati Raj Institution in Rajasthan to Foster Rural Livelihood Opportunities Meeting the challenges of Globalisation and Economic Liberalisation.’ Unanimously agreed to promote rural livelihood, particularly the non-farm sector.

Addressing the gathering, Consultant Economist Prof CS Barla and RUDA executive director Rajan Mathur chaired the technical sessions on the pro-active role of PRIs in the sector’s existing threats and opportunities

CUTS Centre for Consumer Action Research and Training (CUTS CART), Jaipur is implementing it in Rajasthan organized the event here on Thursday. Rural Non-farm Development Agency chairman and managing director Rohit R Brandon focused on strategies to eradicate poverty in rural communities.

He said that the non-farm sector (handloom and handicraft) should be promoted by community participation and assuring access to adequate market of the product particularly and highlighted the need for developing a community public private partnership (CPPP) model in the non-farm sector. Jaipur Zila Parishad Zila Pramukh Ram Gopal Guard said that there was an urgent need for implementation of programmes and policies in rural areas. Also the involvement of Panchayati Raj Institutions was also needed.

Handloom and handicraft activities could be one of the ways for revival of the rural economy and eradication of joblessness and poverty, he added.

CUTS CART associate director George Cheriyan said that Canada Fund for Local Initiatives, High Commission of Canada, New Delhi has supported this project.

The inputs received from the workshop will help in designing the slot cum base line survey and training modules, he said.

Among those who took part included representatives from the CSO, non-government organisations and concerned agencies, private entrepreneurs (domestic exporters), self-help groups (SHGs) leaders, representatives of different producer/community groups from the rural areas, small-scale industries national and international trade promotional agencies.