The National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM), the Central government’s flagship initiative to eradicate poverty countrywide may have been inspired by Kerala’s Kudumbashree initiative, but the organisational network of the movement would get to play only a marginal role in NRLM implementation in the State.

Rural Development Minister K. C. Joseph said in response to a calling attention motion from C. Ravindranath (CPI-M) in the Assembly on Wednesday that the Kudumbashree would have to share work with various Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) and men’s Self-Help Groups (SHGs) when the NRLM gets implemented in the State. Since Kudumbashree was exclusively a women’s movement and NRLM visualised only 40 per cent of its work for women, it would have to leave the remaining work to the NGOs and men’s SHGs, particularly when it came to hard physical labour, the Minister said.

Mr. Joseph also made it clear that the NRLM would be implemented under the supervision of the Department of Rural Development enlisting the participation of the local self-government institutions. He insisting that there was total operational convergence between the Rural Development and Local Self-Government Departments and there would, therefore, be no problem in the two departments working together on the project. He also assured the House that the government would continue to offer all support that the last government had given to Kudumbashree.

Earlier, Mr. Ravindranath called upon the government to entrust exclusively with the Kudumbashree Mission the task of implementing the NRLM in the State considering the fact that the Kudumbashree movement was the model on which the NRLM had been formulated.

Roads: Responding to another calling attention motion from Mons Joseph (KC-M), Public Works Minister V. K. Ibrahim Kunju said that the government was in discussion with the World Bank on provision of Rs. 1,059 crores in assistance for the second stage of the Kerala State Transportation Project. The government was also working on a State Road Improvement Project costing Rs. 1,000 crores, the Minister said.