The Chief Secretary, Dr. Arun Kumar Mehta today e-inaugurated 44 Aspirational Blocks under Aspirational Block Development Programme in presence of Manoj Kumar Dwivedi, Principal Secretary, General Administration Department, Sushma Chauhan, Secretary, Planning Development & Monitoring Department, and other senior officers of department.
Divisional Commissioner, Jammu and District Development Commissioners of all the districts attended the e-inauguration through virtual mode from their respective offices.
The Chief Secretary said that the Aspirational Block Development Programme is a step towards equitable and inclusive development in J&K.
He said the developmental realities of these blocks have been different from those, which are not part of this programme and, therefore, an affirmative action for these blocks was long overdue.
“The programme is expected to usher in a new era of development in these blocks,” he said.
Earlier in her presentation, Secretary, Planning Development & Monitoring Department, informed that Aspirational Block Development Programme is aimed at achieving holistic development of the 44 most backward blocks in J&K.
These most backward blocks (2 most backward blocks from each District) have been selected as Aspirational Blocks based on their socio-economic backwardness on 21 parameters/indicators covering sectors like poverty, education, health & infrastructure in consultation with NITI Aayog,
Under the programme, the District Development Commissioners will prepare Aspirational Block Development Programme Plan in convergence with other schemes in the block. Asum of Rs. one crore per block has been earmarked under the programme and the District Development Commissioners will be the focal point for this programme, who will designate Nodal Officers for each such block in their districts for its implementation.
Dr. Mehta informed that for proper implementation of the programme, Senior Secretaries will be designated as Prabhari Officers of these blocks and each Secretary will be assigned more than one block for mentoring/supervision of the programme.
The Chief Secretary advised DDCs to explore innovative ways having regard to the unique challenges/ constraints in their areas for improving the socio-economic status of these backward blocks under the programme.
He further said that a mid-term appraisal of these blocks will also be carried out after 3-4 months for any necessary mid course policy changes.