TODAY -

Communitization of Institutions in Nagaland

Communitization of Institutions in Nagaland
Courtesy: Oken Jeet Sandham


When the entire North Eastern Region is struggling to create climate conducive for various developmental activities, good governance, curbing crimes and incidents, etc., Nagaland has witnessed a surge in various developmental fronts besides unprecedented drop in incidents of crimes this year and most importantly the Government's policy of devolution of powers for managing the institutions to the community.

The scheme of "communitization" has been approved by the State Cabinet on December 14 and decided that a "Legislation" in this regard will be enacted shortly. Every village has school and there are health facilities, water supply, electricity and rural roads are reaching almost all the villages in the State.

"But the feeling is many of our institutions are not functioning properly", Nagaland Chief Secretary RS Pandey told this writer. "In order to improve the situation, the Government proposes to share 'management responsibility for such institutions with the community for whom the 'institutions' have been set up".

"So the communitization of public institutions are services would mean delegating powers to the community and empowering them", the Chief Secretary pointed out that the real stake holders at the grass root level manage these institutions as their own.

He said the State Cabinet has also approved Schemes in respect of electricity, education and health sub-centers. Initially it will be done on pilot basis and evaluated after a year before taking to scale. Expressing confidence that the new scheme of communitization would gain its momentum in two to three years. Pandey said State has rich "social capital" with its unique "social and community bonding". Therefore the communitization would seek to invest the social capital in the better management of the institutions.

The State has also witnessed a drastic decline of over 27 per cent in incidents of crime this year in the State and only 954 cases of crime were registered from January 1 to December 14 this year was much below in comparison to the cases registered in the previous three years. In murder cases too, sixty-four murder cases have been registered this year as against 84 in 1998, 128 in 1999 and 111 in 2000. There has been drop in the crime under local and special laws that altogether 441 cases have been registered this year from January 1 to December 14 as against 584 in 1998, 313 in 1999 and 711 in 2000.

All these improvement in law and order in the State were possible due to public mobilization and people's profound yearning for peace, which have been clearly reflected from the series of public peace rallies held across the State. Besides there is a noticeable improvement in the governance system such as Police and Administration.

There have also been a marked improvement on the State's financial administration during 2000-2001 by pruning down avoidable expenditure, stoppage of unauthorized and illegal recruitment in Government sectors, the Reserved Bank of India (RBI) has never imposed financial embargo on treasury transactions during the last two years in the State. And for the improvement of State's financial administration and better fiscal management and reaching fiscal reform milestone, the Union Finance Ministry had also awarded Rs 57 lakh to the State Government as "incentives". The State also saw the highest ever allocation of Plan Size to it for 2001-2002, which is in fact unprecedented in the history of State Plan Size allocation since Statehood in 1963.

In order to boost two-way trade with neighboring Myanmar, Government has already identified four trade centers on the International border. Barter system in trade has already been started at two places at the State border by opening weekly markets. With the new State Industrial Policy 2000, the State Government has also announced a slew of attractive concession to woo private investment into Nagaland where better law and order prevails at present due to on-going peace process.

Unicef has also assisted the State in a big way by sponsoring series of seminars, workshops including famed International Motivator Shiv Khera's motivational workshop, Imagine Nagaland, etc., over the last one year. Unicef has already sanctioned rainwater-harvesting, renewal of educational program, AIDs Control measures, etc.

"People today need a strong dose of motivation for the new approaches to life and thinking so that we can compete with the fast changing global scenario", said Pandey who is also instrumental in bringing all the Unicef initiatives in the State and in starting the communitization process.

The Chief Secretary also explained the Unicef's "Imagine Nagaland Workshop" was through a technique called "Appreciative Inquiry (AI)".

"People's minds are being inquired into as to what all can be done towards better Nagaland. AI is a method of interviewing people and after we interview, the positives in the person come out. It has been exercise in distilling inter-generational wisdom", Pandey added.

The Unicef's current International issue on the State of the World's Children, has also devoted a full page on "Imagine Nagaland". Nagaland is the only State, which has featured this way in the publication. The Chief secretary also said the Naga Hospital Kohima was going to be linked with "Apollo Hospital" through "telemedicine Project". This project will come about through Japanese Grant of about two crore.


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