New Delhi, Mar 27 : A new centrally sponsored scheme namely 'Multi-Sectoral Development Programme' has been approved for implementation in minority concentration Districts, with 100 per cent Central assistance, during the 11th Five Year Plan with an estimated expenditure of Rs.37.8 billion.
The programme aims at improving the socio-economic parameters and basic amenities in these districts for improving the quality of life of the people and reducing imbalances in line with priority attached to inclusive growth. Absolutely critical infrastructure linkages like connecting roads, basic health infrastructure, Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) centres, skill development and marketing facilities required for improving living conditions and economic opportunities and catalyzing the growth process would also be eligible for inclusion in the plan.
The focus of this programme will be on rural and semi-rural areas of the identified 90 minority concentration Districts. Financial assistance would made available to these districts to address the 'development deficits' that were either not met fully by existing schemes and programmes or catered to by any scheme and programme of the State or Central Government. The programme will be implemented by the Panchayati raj institutions, line departments, agencies and scheduled area councils in accordance with the implementation mechanism in practice in the State and Union Territories (UT).
A suitable monitoring system would be put in place. An independent in-depth evaluation would be made after two years to assess the need for any mid-term correction.
The releases will be subject to a commitment form the State Government and UT Administration that they will be constituting a state level committee and district level committee for implementation of the Prime Minister's new 15 point programme for the welfare of minorities, if not already done.
State and UT would also notify a department in the State and UT with clear responsibility to deal with schemes for minority welfare. They will have to set up an IT enables cell in that department exclusive to look after the implementation, monitoring, reporting and evaluation of this programme.
As the programme has been included in the 11th Five Year Plan, an amount of Rs.1.2 billion has been earmarked for 2007-08. The expenditure during the 11th Five Year Plan will be identified 'development deficits' through a district specific plan for provision of better infrastructure for education, sanitation, pucca housing, drinking water and electricity supply, besides beneficiary oriented schemes for creating income generating opportunities.