08 February 2021, New Delhi, IN: A total of Rs.913.43 crore has been provided to Ministry of Panchayati Raj (MOPR) in budget 2021-22 which marks 32% increase over the revised estimate of 2020-21. The major part of it of Rs.593 crores is provided under the Scheme Rashtriya Gram Swaraj Abhiyan (RGSA), a Centrally Sponsored Scheme that aims to strengthen Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) for achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with main focus on convergence with Mission Antyodaya through capacity building of the rural local governments. The infrastructure facilities like Panchayat Bhawans, computer & broadband connectivity, trained manpower etc. and providing quality training to the elected representatives and other functionaries of the PRIs are the principal components of RGSA.
A provision of Rs.200 crores has been made for a new scheme-SVAMITVA to provide the ‘record of rights’ to village household owners possessing houses in inhabited rural areas in villages and issuance of property cards to the property owners through survey of village areas with help of drone technology by Survey of India.
The Pilot phase of SVAMITVA had been approved with Budget Outlay of Rs.79.65 crore. During the Pilot Phase, the scheme is being implemented in 9 States viz. Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Punjab, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh. Till 31st January, 2021 Drone Survey has been completed in about 23,300 villages. Property Cards have been prepared and distributed/under distribution to about 2.30 lakh property holders of about 1,432 villages. Likewise, 210 CORS are being set up in the States of Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana and Madhya Pradesh. These are likely to be completed and operationalized by March 2021. Survey of India has deployed about 130 Drone Teams in the States and these are being slowly augmented with supply of ‘Made in India’ drones by suppliers. It is expected that about 250 Drone Teams will be in place by March 2021. Steps are being taken to deploy about 500 Drone Teams in the States/UTs in 2021-22.
The Ministry has sent a proposal to Department of Expenditure with an outlay of Rs.566.23 crore for extending the scheme to rest of India to cover nearly 5.41 lakh villages. In 2021-22, with budget provision of Rs. 200 crores, 16 States will be covered targeting 2.30 lakh villages.
The scheme covers multifarious aspects viz. facilitating monetisation of properties and enabling bank loan; reducing property related disputes; comprehensive village level planning, would be the stepping-stone towards achieving Gram Swaraj in true sense and making rural India Atmanirbhar.
The drone requirements for SVAMITVA scheme has boosted the Drone Manufacturing sector in India. The Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) have now developed Survey Grade Drones and supply for 175 units had been given to “Make in India” product companies. Survey of India (SoI), being technology partner for the implementation of the scheme, has been working arduously to achieve Scheme targets.
By 2022, SVAMITVA Scheme would ensure CORS network coverage across the Country. The Continuous Operating Reference System (CORS) network, once established, are usable by any State agency/ Department viz Revenue Department, Gram Panchayat (GP), Public Works Department, Rural Development Department, Agriculture, Drainage & Canal, Education, Electricity, Water, Health etc. for survey works and implementation of schemes using GIS based applications. The CORS overhauls the Jarib / or traditional survey system in the rural abadi area and provides accuracy upto 5 centimetre-level horizontal positioning in real-time. The future update of the records can be easily done with the use of the ROVERs.
Large Scale Mapping of rural abadi area survey under the Scheme generates high resolution and accurate maps of the scale 1:500 that would facilitate creation of the most durable records of property holdings in the rural abadi areas and support in comprehensive village level planning.
Further, this is the first time ever that such a large-scale exercise involving most modern technology is being carried out to benefit millions of rural property owners, covering all villages across the Country.
Drone survey technology is the latest survey methodology which makes mapping activities easier and more efficient. It reduces field time and survey costs to one-tenth and capture of topographic data with a drone is much faster than with land-based methods. Taking into cognizance the usability of this technology, many States like Haryana, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka are surveying areas, in addition to rural abadi area. That is, however, not being covered under SVAMITVA.
Also, the Scheme has uplifted generation of employment for skilled manpower. Due to the huge requirement for GIS manpower, more than 600 GIS Digitizers have been engaged at various Survey of India (SoI) offices and these numbers are increasing regularly based on their requirements. As a result, numerous START-UPs and MSME service companies have started augmenting their GIS manpower bench strength to cater to these requirements.
Towards the roll out of the Scheme (FY 2021-2024), States of Goa, Gujarat, Kerala and Odisha have conveyed approval for the implementation of Scheme in the next Phase. Chhattisgarh and Tripura have already signed a memorandum of understanding with the Survey of India. States of Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Ladakh and Tamil Nadu are actively considered to initiate the preparatory activities for the implementation of Scheme in the next phase and discussions are on-going with these States.The Scheme has the potential to transform rural India. Successful implementation of the Scheme has very large impact in upliftment of rural economy.