HYDERABAD: Self-help groups (SGHs) in Kamalapur village in Karnataka lack access to information, funds, transparency in the implementation of MGNREGA scheme, adequate awareness on market linkages and product registration and marketing, observed a team visited from the National Institute of Rural Development and Panchayati Raj (NIRDPR), Hyderabad.
The team of NIRDPR along with foreign officials from Ghana, Myanmar and Sudan enrolled in the Centre for Post Graduate Studies and Distance Education of NIRDPR visited the Kamalapur village with where close to 130 SHGs are involved in several activities such as selling fruits, bangles and groceries, roti and pickle making and lamination among others.
According to a press release issued by the NIRDPR, the visit was made in order to ascertain the marketability of products produced by SHG groups and assist them in enhancing the market chain. During the visit, the team of experts observed several gaps impeding effective functioning of SHG.
“The ministry of Panchayati Raj has been stressing on the collaboration and convergence of functional relations between the Panchayati Raj Institutions and SHGs to bring about development. This is possible only when both field organisations share mutual trust and understanding,” said Akanksha Shukla, associate professor and head, Centre for Development Documentation and Communication, NIRDPR.
The NIRDPR recommended filing of RTIs to ensure transparency, geotagging of MGNREGA assets, watershed management and capacity-building and training of SHGs. “It was learnt that Mysore Resettlement and Development Agency facilitates 50 CMRCs in Karnataka alone and therefore advised that the managers of the 50 CMRCs be deputed for training to NIRDPR’s Rural Technology Park (RTP), who will in the future, play a key role in strengthening the functioning, efficacy and impact of SHGs,” read the press release.
In addition, the team suggested that the SHG members could visit the RTP to be equipped with the training and knowledge that will empower them to establish and grow successful businesses and demand resources and information from rural development functionaries.