National, December 16, 2013
- Undertakes more than 50 initiatives for the development of fisherman community
- Strives towards social and economic development of its communities through interventions in health, education, income generation & livelihood restoration, infrastructure development, energy conservation and natural resource management.
Tata Power, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Coastal Gujarat Power Limited (CGPL) has always endeavoured towards sustainable development of the community in and around its projects. In line with this philosophy, Tata Power has implemented a systematic strategy that has benefited villagers from Tunda, Vandh, Modhva, Tragadi Bunder, Mota Kandagra, Nana Bhadiya, Nani Khakhar and Moti Khakhar villages in Mundra and Mandvi Taluka.
Tata Power has adopted a multi-dimensional community development program as part of its community engagement initiatives. The major thematic areas of interventions include health, education, income generation & livelihood restoration, infrastructure development, energy conservation and natural resource management.
The programmes and their outcomes are aligned to achieve high level impact on sustenance for the villagers and fishing community in Mundra. Tata Power has undertaken more than 50 initiatives to benefit fisherman community of Modhva, and Tragadi bunder villages in Mandvi. Some of the highly successful initiatives by the Company include Project Sujaan, Project Uttkarsh in Tragadi and Nanabhadiya villages, Kanthi Area Livelihood Programme (Gaushala) at Tunda and Vandh, Project Surya Prakash, Project Shiksha Sarathi in 50 villages covering 84 schools, Self Help Group amongst others.
Under Project Akshay Urja Deep more than 325 fishermen and 100 boat owners have been benefitted by lighting fishing boats using solar energy at Modhva and Tragadi Bunder. This project has enabled the fishermen to go into the sea post sunset and catch fish for long hours in the sea, boosting the quantum of fish caught. These arrangements have also helped avoid collisions with other boats. The scheme has been appreciated by the state government and will now be implemented by the fisheries department directly at subsidized rates
Under project ‘Arogya’ free healthcare treatment is provided to the Tragadi bunder fishermen community at Mandvi. The camp successfully reached out to more than 100 people including adults and children, who received not only free consultation but also free medicines. Health awareness training about personal hygiene and health care was also organized for the community by medical team.
Project Sagarbandhu is an ambitious program designed for the development of the fishermen community through strengthening of village institutions like the Village Development Advisory Council (VDAC) and Community based organisations (CBOs). Activities undertaken include VDAC formation, value chain analysis, revolving fund at the start of the season, roof rain water harvesting, , exposure visits, regular meetings, SHG formation, drinking water and sanitation facilities, and school level interventions, distribution of boat lights, fishing nets and marketing equipment.
The company provides “Livelihood Support” to 467 fishermen of Modhva fishing hamlet to enhance their fish catch through better fishing nets. Fisher folks need to change their nets twice in a season which turns out to be an expensive affair.
Tata Power is also providing uninterrupted drinking water to the communities of Tragadi Bunder during the fishing season [avg. 15000 litres/day].
To provide better access to sanitation and maintaining the health and hygiene of the fishing community the company has assessed the need for providing basic sanitation facilities, as the culture of open defecation was prevalent among the community. In order to stop this, the company provided three mobile toilet units and placed it at the temporary settlement of fisher men.
The access to reach the bunder was strengthened by providing a cross over bridge through which the fishermen can directly reach the bunder. The connectivity up to the sand dunes has helped the fisher folks of the bunder in spending less money and labour for transportation to catch fish.
With growing success and the community’s ownership of Sagarbandhu Phase 1, the company is undertaking phase 2. Efforts are being made towards increasing ownership amongst the villagers, of Modhva and Tragadi, for development work by building and strengthening local institutions, formation and grooming of SHGs, VDACdeveloping infrastructure, convergence with ongoing Government scheme and implementation among other efforts.
CGPL has formed a partnership with AKRSP (I) Agakhan Rural Suuport Program India and Fisheries Management Resource Centre (FishMARC) to protect and enhance the livelihoods of the traditional marine fishing communities of Kutch through strengthening and scaling up the cooperative institution of fish workers. The partnership is all about for hollistic development of the fisher community.
Speaking on the initiative, Mr. Anil Sardana, Managing Director- Tata Power stated, “As part of our Sustainability model, we at Tata Power focus on care for environment and communities residing in and around its project areas. Our community development initiatives are in line with the vision of our founder Shri Jamshetji Tata. The Company endeavours to help the fishermen community to be self-sufficient and economically independent. We aim to increase their productivity by stimulating their interest, promoting innovative ideas and best practices, as well as providing them with the necessary support. We would like to thank all our partners for their support and contribution towards helping these communities.”
- Project Sujaan is aimed towards formalising education system byvalue addition through computer literacy. The project has been successful in educating more than 900 students in Mundra, Kutch.
- Project Uttkarsh– A holistic community development program catering to the needs of the community through their active participation. Uttkarsh is giving impetus to Safe drinking water by installing RO plants, rural energy and water management by construction of check dams, creation of Adarsh Anganwadi, and establishment of milk collection centres, activities related to farming and drip irrigation and many more.
- Project KALP (Gaushala)– (Cattle Rearing) – Under this initiative, CGPL has provided an innovative and replicable model by establishing Fodder Supply Centres and building Gaushalas (animal shelters) in 2 panchayats of Mundra, Gujarat.
- Understanding the need of the villagers for safe and clean drinking water, Project ‘Swach Jal’ was launched. The well has been constructed to benefit more than 275 families in the village.
- Project Akshay Urja Deep– Under the project Akshay Urja Deep”, CGPL installed boat lights at a fishermen’s hamlet (Modhva). The target for installation is 131 boats.
- Project Shiksha Sarathi – The Company focuses on educational excellence for the children in its communities and focuses on enhancing experience and arranging varied programmes for the school children. The Company has availed opportunity for participating in the ongoing government sponsored programme so that children can get excellent education and secure their future.
- Self Help Group (SHG) – Based on this understanding, since 2008, CGPL has been engaged in forming women SHGs in surrounding communities of their operations. The first SHG was formed in Tunda Vandh village and the number of SHGs has now reached 45 SHGs in the 7 villages of Mundra & Mandvi taluka of Kutch. This initiative provides support to 445 women of the villages by initiating micro finance, capacity building activity. CGPL formed bank linkages, offered credit support, provided training and capacity building workshops along with handholding support to these women to start their own ventures
The Company continues to serve its target neighbouring communities under CGPL’s Impact Mitigation and Community Development Plan (Based on the Baseline Social Impact Assessment). Future efforts by the company will help to resolve health, sanitation and educational needs of the local people. Investments will be made to increase community’s access to better quality social services and livelihood options.
The Company is also working in partnership with NGOs, State and Central bodies which has helped them to widen the reach and leverage each partner’s individual experience and expertise, thereby making substantial difference in the lives of communities.