Participatory Processes in Watershed Development Programme

Understanding the Participatory Processes in Watershed Development Programme in Rajasthan
(A National Level Study)

Rajasthan has been historically prone to acute water scarcity and drought. The state has almost 2/3rd of its area covered by arid, semi-arid climatic conditions and has therefore a fragile eco-system, facing recurrent droughts. The co-relation between poverty and degradation of natural resources in Rajasthan cannot be gainsaid. The traditional livelihood systems have become more vulnerable over decades with deterioration of natural resources. Deforestation, loss of pasturelands and grasslands, loss of traditional institutions for sustainable management of water harvesting structures and encroachment have all added up in weakening agriculture and rearing cattle activity, two most important sources of livelihoods of the people of Rajasthan.

Watershed development projects focuses on restoration and maintenance of ecological balance by harnessing, conserving and developing natural resources. It on one hand arrests the process of ecological dis-balance; on the other hand it provides employment opportunity to the resource poor community. Rural areas of the state would be benefited through successful implementation of the program by restoration of degraded natural resources and as such addressing sustainability of livelihoods of the rural population.

An interactive CD on "Understanding Participatory Processes in Watershed Development Programme in Rajasthan" is also available at ARAVALI.


Preparing Database of Best 2-3 SGSY Products in the State of Rajasthan

About the Study

The objective of the study was to prepare a database of 2-3 main products promoted through SGSY in each district of Rajasthan. These products will be identified based on their sell ability and value addition potential. The study besides identifying the main products seeks to provide a detailed note on all the SHGs involved in making of the identified products. The study also seeks to compile information of the location of the SHGs involved, the level of connectivity, procurement of assets and raw materials, interventions in design, packaging and branding; status of current marketing and long tern marketing arrangements; pricing policy adopted for the products; profit margins. The study also focuses to tabulate quantity of monetary help taken from Ministry of Rural Development and also the status of repayment along with contact address of 2 members of the SHGs where orders can be placed.

The specific objectives1 of the study is as follows:

To identify 2-3 main products in each district (promoted through SGSY) based on their saleability and value addition potential.
To prepare a database of all the groups involved in making those products.
To study and analyse the different aspect of production (as mentioned above) of the identified products.
To compile the extent of financial help taken by each SHG and status of repayments.

Scope of the Study

The scope of the study included all 32 districts of Rajasthan. The study was carried out taking into consideration the SHGs financed during the period April 1999 to January 2006. This period was fixed in consultation with IRD, Govt. of Rajasthan. During this period out of the 32 districts, in 2 districts [1] - Jaisalmer and Nagaur, no SHGs have been financed for any economic activity. Thus these 2 districts were not considered within the scope of this study. However during the study, efforts were made to collect information of groups which were financed for economic activities till March 2006.
[1] As per the data provided by IRD, Govt. of Rajasthan.

District Human Development Report


The UNDP initiative of ranking countries on the basis of their human development indices has been accepted universally as an effective method to bring into focus deficiencies in health, education and access to other essential facilities for a good living. From a simple measure of per capita income as indicator of development, we have moved into a much more holistic concept of ‘well being’ of the population. The notion of well-being has shifted away from just material attainments, or the means for development, to outcomes that are either desirable in themselves or desirable because of their role in supporting better opportunities for people. Preparation of State Human Development Reports (HDRs) has also been gaining ground in India. These HDR’s have emerged as the principal advocacy platform for sustainable human development. To translate this advocacy into action plans the need was felt to prepare such report at a more disaggregated level.

The District Human Development Report- Tonk is an attempt to map the state of human development in the district. The quality of life and the level of human well-being have been ranked across panchayat samities. The choice of indicators has been governed by the overall impact on the quality of life and the standard of living of people. There has been, in recent years, a conceptual broadening in the notions of human well-being and deprivation.

The Report has seven chapters. Chapter 1 outlines the concept, methodology and State of Human Development and the Chapter 2 deals with the Profile of Tonk District. Chapter 3 discusses economy of the district and the status of livelihood is discussed in Chapter 4. This is followed by indicators on educational attainments in Chapter 5. Health attainments and demographic concerns are covered in Chapter 6. The annexure include Profile of the Panchayat Samities at a glance and the methodology used for building the composite indices The assumptions that have been made to fill gaps in the database used for the Report have also been discussed. A detailed Statistical Annex is presented at the end.

Impact Assessment of Rural Development Programme

(A study in Jalore District of Rajasthan w.e.f. 2001-2004)

Executive Summary

The Impact Assessment Studies commissioned by Government of India tries to assess the overall impact of six rural development programmes of the Ministry of Rural Development being implemented in selected villages of Jalore district, Rajasthan. The impact assessment study was carried out in 40 villages from four blocks namely Ahore, Jalore, Bhinmal and Jaswantpura in Jalore district, Rajasthan.

Study aimed to capture the spatial dimension of various rural development and poverty alleviation programmes. The reference period for the study was 3 years (2001-2002, 2002-2003 and 2003-2004). The study covered rural development schemes such as Sampoorna Gramin Rojgar Yojana, Indira Awas Yojana, Swarna Jayanti Gram Swarojgar Yojana, Desert Development Programme, Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme and Swajaldhara.

Four blocks were selected to have an adequate geographical representation for conducting the impact assessment study. Based on the socio-economic parameters two relatively better off and two other blocks were covered under the study. Further based on the physical spread of programme implementation, 10 villages were selected from each block. A detailed questionnaire was designed to collect the primary data from the field involving 600 individual beneficiaries from 40 villages.

Socio-Economic Profile of Jalore District

Jalore district has a very dry climate with extreme temperature and very low rainfall. Human development index of the district is 0.5 and is ranked 29th in the state. The population growth rate of the district over a decade is 26.78%. The Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes proportion in the district is 18 % and 8.8 % respectively. There has been a sharp fluctuation in the sex ratio in the district over the decade. The non-worker in the district comprises about 50%.

Family profiles of the sample households were done through door-to-door interaction with the heads of 600 households in 40 villages of four blocks. The sample size of the respondents interviewed were 61 % male and 39 % female. The proportion of the SC and ST were 42.3% and 22 % respectively. As most of the rural development programmes are targeted to benefit the BPL families therefore 71.16 % household interviewed were from the below poverty line.

Performance of the program over three years

The secondary data collected from the district and block offices for the assessment of physical and financial performance of the rural development programmes over the period of three years showed good results. The guidelines of the rural development schemes were strictly followed during the implementation both at the district and block level.

During the study period (2001-02, 2002-03,2003-04)

Under IAY scheme total houses constructed were 2802 out of which Schedule Caste got 1234, Schedule Tribes got 566; Other’s 998 and 4 houses were constructed for Physically Handicapped.
Under SGSY 2568 individuals swarozgaris were benefited and 601new SHG groups were formed.
Under SGRY total wage employment generated in the district was 19.66 lakhs man-days.
Under Accelerated rural water supply programme (ARWSP) and Swajaldhara scheme total geographical area of 10640 sq. km. In the district was covered under the scheme. By the end of year 2005 all 697 habited villages and 1101 hamlets has been covered under the scheme in the district.
Under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana total 71 villages have been connected with the panchayat head quarter in three years by construction of new roads.
The selection of the beneficiaries was done in a fair and transparent manner under various rural development schemes at the village level through Gram Panchayat except in few cases. Implementations of these schemes were done properly. Assets created under various schemes have raised the financial status as well as social status along with social security of the beneficiaries. At present most of the assets created were found in good condition but some of them are under utilised. The participation level of beneficiaries during the planning, design and purchase of raw material was comparatively low.

Methods for publicity and level of awareness

Government has made efforts to create awareness and disseminate the information about rural development schemes through interpersonal meetings, street plays, poster campaign, distribution of leaflets etc. As a result it was found that around 72.33% of the respondents were aware of IAY scheme, 49.33% about SGSY scheme, 66.50% about SGRY, 17.67% about PMGSY, 21% about DDP and 0.33% about ARWSP. Sarpanch, Gram–Sewak, Ward-panch and other members of the community were the prominent source of the information about the rural development schemes.

The role of PRIs in planning and implementation of programmes

During the study it was found that Panchayati Raj Institutions are proactively involved in the planning, implementation and monitoring of the rural development schemes. And most of these schemes were rooted through District Rural Development Agency, intermediate Panchayat and gram Panchayat. As per the 73rd amendment in the constitution the concept of ward sabha came into force. But during the impact assessment study we could not find active role of ward sabha in planning, implementation and monitoring of these schemes. We also found that most of the ward sabha are only for the namesake and the Sarpanch and the Gram Sewak at Gram Panchayat level take up most of the decisions.

Overall impact of the programme

Overall the implementation of the centrally sponsored rural development programmes such as SGSY; IAY; SGRY; DDP; PMGSY and ARSWP & Swajaldhara was implemented to a large extent in true sense and spirit. And it has helped in improving the social and economic standard of living of the targeted individual beneficiaries and the groups. Contribution for these programmes has been gregariously admitted by the beneficiaries and observed by the study team. The implementation of these programmes in the district has benefited both individuals and the villages as a whole in social and financial aspects, which ultimately led in the improvement of the quality of life of the beneficiaries and villages as a whole.

As per the secondary data available at the district and block level, related to financial and physical achievements of the selected rural development programmes were found to be in good progress.

Problems and deficiencies in implementation

During the study team found various deficiencies and problems while implementation of the rural development schemes in the district such as the support given by the government under IAY scheme i.e. Rs.20, 000 /- was found insufficient for the construction of the house. There are instances of erroneous selection under IAY scheme by the gram Panchayat. During the study irregularity were found in selection of the beneficiaries under SGRY scheme and Sarpanch obliged his family members or close associates by providing them more number of wage employment days or assigning relatively less labour intensive work such as deputing on supervision work, arranging for drinking water etc.

Suggestions and Recommendations

Suggestions and recommendations have been put to achieve better results from these programmes such as more area should be brought under watershed treatment through DDP on continuous manner. Most of the rural development programme targets BPL families therefore list of BPL families should be prepared with proper care and Government should prepare village wise database of the BPL families and it should be made available on-line through IT. Emphasis should be given on the development of the human capital through organizing training programmes for the representatives of the PRIs and for the selected beneficiaries under various schemes.

Selection of beneficiaries should be done in a participatory manner so that poor are benefited under different programmes and wrong selections are avoided.

PRIs representatives should be provided adequate trainings in time for enhancing their skills and capacities for effective delivery mechanisms.

Wider awareness generation campaign should be initiated for having wider outreach of various rural development programmes and benefits are accessed by the poor.



ARAVALI is the nodal agency at the state level to study the process documentation of the successful watershed development programme in eight selected watersheds implemented in the Rajasthan state. This study is being commissioned at National Level by WASSAN, Hyderabad in eight States. The study is funded by ICEF, New Delhi. The main objective of the study is to strengthen the participatory processes in Watershed Development Programmes in India.

Sector Reform Study

An evaluation study on ”Concurrent Reform Projects under Rural Water Supply Programme” by Ministry of Rural Development in Jaipur, Sikar, Alwar and Rajasmand Districts was taken up by ARAVALI this year. The study aims at providing a qualitative and quantitative review of the sector reform project in terms of community management of schemes; involvement of community in planning, execution, operation and maintenance; institutional arrangements and socio economic impact of the project.

Magra Area Development Project

In the year 2000, Government of Rajasthan engaged ARAVALI to undertake a baseline study to demarcate the Magra Area and identify the development gaps and priority for its development. Based on the survey, the government allocated funds for the development of the area. In the year 2005, again Government of Rajasthan requested ARAVALI to prepare a proposal detailing out situational analysis and identifying appropriate solutions in terms of natural resource enhancement, infrastructure development, capacity building aspects and finally proposing a strategic plan of Bhilwara district.