25 Dec INTEGRATED RURAL DEVELOPMENT AND ROLE OF SDGs (GS-3, 2)
INTEGRATED RURAL DEVELOPMENT AND ROLE OF SDGs- Today Current Affairs
The 2030 agenda for ‘Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)’ by the United Nations was implemented with effect from January 1, 2016; in ensuring peace, prosperity and opportunity for all along with health and well being and to put a full stop on all kinds of deprivation evils like poverty and inequality.
The agenda enlisted 17 SDGs with 169 Targets, which are the milestones of holistic socio-economic transformation, having priority focus on the wellbeing of people and planet earth at large. As a global mandate, the SDGs cover three key T dimensions of sustainable development viz., (a) economic growth (b) social inclusion and (c) environmental protection: which are closely interconnected and inevitable, as a part of the wellbeing of the individuals, communities, nations and world development. The primary focus of SDGs has been on proactive participation of all the stakeholders like National and State Governments of UN member nations, policymakers, local governance bodies, industries, local communities and people across all layers of society. Although it has been universally accepted by 193 countries, its success predominantly depends upon the country-specific development initiatives and commitment in effective implementation of SDGs, with the “GLOCAL (Global thinking, Local action)” approach. In this regard, it is a gratifying fact that India is committed, by heart and soul, for the effective and integrated implementation for attaining the desired SDGs by 2030, especially focusing on “Leave No One Behind” and “A Life of Dignity for All”. The Hindu Analysis.
The SDGs and Rural Development in India The well-being of the Indian economy certainly depends upon the living and livelihood patterns of the rural economy. India is a country where almost 2/3rd population lives in rural areas as compared to urban areas where hardly 1/3rd of the population live, so rural development in itself becomes all the way more important when we talk about public policy making. Thus we can use the ‘integrated rural development’ index in sustainable development appraisal that focuses on the enlargement of people’s choices and their capabilities, across India. So the mantra for the success of SDGs in India’ predominantly based on the all inclusive and holistic development of rural India.
To find out the nature of association between SDGs and rural development, we have used the qualitative scale 1-3 to measure the degree of linkages. The parameters of associations are mostly framed from the SDGs descriptions and outcomes. It was found that out of 17 SDGs, 8 SDGs are highly linked in the scale of 3 with rural development, and 4 SDGs are moderately associated in a scale of 2. Similarly,4 SDGs are dimly linked in a scale of 1 and the last one goal, SDG-17 is not directly connected with rural development. So, based on the nature and degrees of association, it is found that the SDGs can be better achieved only when rural development is given additional importance in the policy making and in our nation’s fiscal landscape. Rural development contributes to 4 ‘P’ out of the 5 ‘P’ as delineated in the policy agenda and these are – People, Planet, Prosperity, and Peace.
Effects of COVID-19 on SDGs: The Hindu Analysis
The whole world is facing a recession of the worst kind because of covid pandemic. Most of the social and economic going on have come to a nix due to COVID-19 pandemic. As a consequence, there has been widespread poverty, inequality and joblessness in most parts of the world. Mass unemployment, stories of jobs cut from various companies are pretty alarming.
This pandemic has devastated the life of everyone be it a rural area or urban area. This pandemic has stalled the developmental processes especially socio-economic because of recession of the worst kind and acts as the biggest challenge in attaining SDGs by 2030. The linkage and matrix of ‘Rural areas and SDGs’ is done for environment mapping, which is crucially important, along with integrated socio economic rural development
Rural Development and SDGs: The Hindu Analysis
The initiatives like Make in India, Skill India, Digital India, Start-up India and Stand-up India, etc., have been successfully launched and effectively operationalised since 2015-16 in India, which has enabled India to expedite socio-economic development. However, amidst of COVID-19 crisis, several steps have been taken by various Ministries to overcome the bottlenecks and focus on the basic and fundamental of provisioning for human subsistence, especially for the marginalised section of the society, who are significantly affected by pandemic by (a) affecting livelihoods, (b) reduced income/ employment, (c) increased inequality due to adverse effects of pandemic, just to mention a few. It’s needless to mention that vital roles are being played by media (print/electronic/digital), NGOs, civil society, CSR initiatives in creating awareness, enrollment, effective participation in embracing the SDGs and their implementation, as proactive partners. Further, with the significant focus on livelihood enhancement through MGNREGA, agriculture, dairy farming, fisheries and poultry, horticulture, forestry etc systems can be hoped to rejuvenate and strengthen the integrated rural development in Indian context.
The three ‘f’ i.e. funds, functions, and functionaries are needed to optimally operate to enhance the desired benefits that can percolate down to the last person in the society. With proper strategic planning, effective implementation with timely execution on large scale with proper monitoring and evaluation while setting the accountability etc. will ensure the success of SDGs. This in turn will lead to the overall of the country attaining the SDGs along the way.