Assam’s Cachar district wins SKOCH Award for nutri-garden project at village

Objective was to make villagers self-reliant during pandemic: Deputy Commissioner

A backyard garden project that enabled a village on the Bangladesh border to consume nutritious plants and vegetables and earn by selling the surplus produce has earned an award for a southern Assam district.

Cachar Deputy Commissioner Keerthi Jalli received the National Silver SKOCH Award a few days ago for ‘Pushti Nirbhor’ (nutrition-dependent), a convergence project on transformation and development entailing setting up nutri-gardens at houses in Dinnathpur Bagicha village.

The village is near the India-Bangladesh border in Katigorah circle of Cachar district.

Instituted in 2003, SKOCH Award salutes people, projects and institutions that go the extra mile to make India a better nation.

“We wanted to develop a work model under Assam Adarsha Gramin Yojana where every department will work in convergence towards a common achievement. We focussed on a village adjacent to the Bangladesh border to make the residents, especially the women self-reliant,” Ms. Jalli said.

Under the project, 30,000 seedlings of vegetables, fruits and herbal plants were distributed among 140 beneficiaries. Each household of the village was also given payment for 75 man-days to implement the project.

“The main objective was to train the villagers toward becoming self-reliant during the pandemic, grow enough for their own nutritional needs and sell the surplus in the markets,” the Deputy Commissioner said.

She credited the success of the project to her team of administrative officers as well as the women of Dinnathpur Bagicha.

“Fortunately, the Gaon Panchayat president of the village is a woman, which made it possible to undertake the project for reducing malnutrition in the village,” Ms. Jalli added.

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