In an effort to provide a helping hand in these days of deepening agrarian crisis, the National Rural Livelihood Mission has approved a Rs. 15-crore project to augment livelihood opportunities of poor women involved in farming in Belgaum and Tumkur.
The Mahila Kisan Sashaktikaran Pariyojana (MKSP) project, approved by the Central Ministry of Rural Development for these two districts, is expected to cover 11,000 women involved in agriculture over the next three years and help them develop agrarian and non-agrarian livelihood skills.
Union Minister for Rural Development Jairam Ramesh wrote to Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar on August 7 asking him to direct the authorities to “take suitable measures for successful implementation of the MKSP.”
The Union government’s initiative was launched in 2011 partly through investment support by the World Bank with the aim of creating institutional platforms of the rural poor, “enabling them to increase household income through sustainable livelihood enhancements and improved access to financial services”.
The mission has the larger agenda to cover seven crore Below Poverty Line households, across 600 districts in India, and support them for livelihood collectives during a period of eight to 10 years.
The project in the two districts of Karnataka has several objectives, including developing entrepreneurial culture, organising women into self-governing groups, enhancing their participation in agricultural productivity and enhancing the food and nutritional security of rural communities in Tumkur and Belgaum. Last year, under the MKSP, a Rs. 6.25-crore project was launched in Ramanagaram and Chitradurga districts.