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How Developed is Modi’s ‘Model’ Village?

How Developed is Modi’s ‘Model’ Village?

After assuming office in 2014, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched his flagship rural development programme, called Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojana, under which each member of parliament had to adopt at least three villages in her/his constituency, and develop them as model villages by improving their physical and institutional infrastructure. The idea was to inspire other villages in the country.

Nagepur is one of the four villages, among Jayapur, Kakarhia and Domari, which Modi adopted in his parliamentary constituency, Varanasi, in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh. Under the scheme, the village was promised better educational facilities, including the building of a government high school, as well as better healthcare facilities, including setting up of a government healthcare centre, better employment opportunities, and construction of all-weather roads, among others.

As people of Nagepur voted on May 19 to elect their next member of parliament, I asked villagers a few days earlier if the promises made by their current lawmaker had been fulfilled. Here’s what I found.

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StoriesAsia, a collective of independent journalists from 16 South Asian and Southeast Asian countries, seeks to replace the present-day parade of faceless numbers with humanising narrative nonfiction – a largely ignored journalistic genre in the region.

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