Raipur, Jan 27 (PTI) Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel took part in “special gram sabha” meetings held in three village panchayats of Chhattisgarh’s Durg district and discussed natural resources management for rural development, an official said Sunday.

The chief minister attended gram sabha (village meetings) in Asoga, Teligundra and Bhansuli village panchayats in Patan development block on Saturday, he said.

Baghel informed villagers about his government’s focus on the conservation and management of four aspects, namely “narva” (rivulets and other water resources), “garuva” (cow and other cattle), “ghurva” (waste management pits) and “bari” (vegetable garden) for sustainable livelihood of villagers.

He said Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of “gram swaraj” will be fulfilled in Chhattisgarh and panchayats will be taking decisions on their own to develop villages.

“Steps will be taken to strengthen the rural economy.

Arrangements will be made to ensure water supply to farm lands. Facilities of gothaan (day care centre for cattle in villages to prevent them from straying into farms) and grazing land for cattle will be made available in villages,” he said.

“Gobar (dung) gas plant will be set up at the gothaan and organic manure will be used in fields and vegetable gardens. Besides, water resources and organic composting facilities will be developed in villages through various schemes like Mahatma Gandhi NREGA and State Rural Livelihood Mission,” he said.

During the special gram sabha meetings, the respective panchayat representatives also approved land for setting up gothaan and grazing area for livestock.

In gram panchayat Asoga, 2.13 hectare of land was earmarked for gothaan while 15 acres was set aside for grazing area while these figures were three acres and five acres respectively for village panchayat Teligundara.

In Bhansuli village, 13 acres of land was approved as grazing area and 3 acre for gothaan, the official said.

Briefing about various decisions of his government, Baghel said loans to the tune of Rs 6,230 crore of farmers were waived and minimum support price (MSP) for paddy has been fixed at Rs 2,500 per quintal.

It is for the first time in the history of the state that a chief minister participated in the local discussions held in special gram sabha, the official claimed.

In the state, gram sabhas are held at least six times in a year to discuss and approve local issues pertaining to social and economic development, the official added.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.