The Village Haat scheme under the erstwhile Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY) is a non-starter in the State due to lack of monitoring.
The scheme launched in 2009 was aimed at providing better marketing facilities to rural artisans and people having micro-economic activities under the self employment programme. The other objectives were to enable the rural poor to sell their products throughout the year with the haat being an one stop shopping platform for the wholesalers, retailers and consumers of local rural products.
Under the Centrally sponsored programme, maximum Rs15 lakh is provided for infrastructure development with the Central share being 75 per cent. The remaining 25 percent is the State’s share.
Though the Ministry of Rural Development has released funds to the State, necessary infrastructure has not been developed in a large number of village haats, official sources said.
The programme was reviewed at the conference of the project directors of the District Rural Development Agencies (DRDAs) here in the first week of June. The project directors were asked to submit a report on the status of village haat by end of June. However, not a single district has responded yet.
After merger of the SGSY scheme under the National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM), the project should be monitored by the state mission director.
Since majority of the village haats are located on panchayat land, there is hardly any problem for taking up construction activities.
The Panchayati Raj department has its own engineers to estimate, design and construct. The construction works could also be given either to the Rural Development or the Public Works departments. The scheme has not made any progress due to lack of monitoring at the district level, sources in the Panchayati Raj department said.