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Government of India

Poverty Free Mission

My dear fellow citizens,


I am pleased to share my Government's vision of eliminating poverty in the State during the formal launch of the Mission - “Poverty Free Sikkim2013”. This mission has time-bound and quantified targets for addressing poverty in its many dimensions including income, essential infrastructure and services, governance and exclusion. These are also basic rights, the right of each person of the State, we want to secure. Nobel laureate Mother Teresa whose birth centenary is being commemorated, always believed that, “We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty.” This is the vision of my Government to ensure that all rural poor are taken care of with utmost tenderness and love.


Our mission is to build a society which is free from the curse of poverty, to ensure that our future generations can afford every opportunity to grow and be successful and contribute to the prosperity of the State and Nation. Tackling poverty is essential to ensure a healthy future for our people. Poverty reduction is about both improving the well-being and quality of life of those living in poverty and ensuring a strong and prosperous future for our State. When we use the term “poverty”, we mean not only a lack of adequate financial resources, but also social exclusion, which is both a consequence and a cause of poverty. Social exclusion refers to individuals not being able to participate fully in the social and economic activities of the society and prevents them from developing to their fullest potential.


Our Mission will also result in the realization of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) of the United Nations, which aims to reduce poverty and improve the lives of people all around the world by 2015. The first MDG promises to reduce extreme poverty and eliminate hunger.


Our vision is people centric as aptly described in this phrase: “When the vision is for one year, cultivate flowers;


When the vision is for ten years, cultivate trees; When the vision is for eternity, cultivate people.”



Universal Financial Inclusion

The Chief Minister's Rural Universal Financial Inclusion Programme was launched during the Independence Day Celebration on 15th Aug, 2010. The programme aims to provide universal access to formal banking services to rural Sikkim, provide easy access to formal financial services, ensure inclusive and equitable growth, empower rural women and to accelerate economic development in rural areas in general. It will also provide insurance services related to house and personal accident to the beneficiary families. Under this programme, about 70,000 rural families in the State will be benefited by opening a savings bank account in the name of the mother of the nuclear family. They will be able to operate this account through a composite biometric smart bank card. The facility for savings and withdrawals from these bank accounts will be provided in the Gram Panchayat Unit itself by opening 163 Points of Service (PoS) facilities to be operated by Banking Business Correspondents as per the Reserve Bank of India guidelines.



Self Sufficiency Mission

We have made significant strides in transforming ourselves as a producer State particularly in regard to enhancement of produce from the agriculture and allied sectors. We are working hard to ensure that all kinds of demands created in the State are met within the State. And we want to see the Sikkimese people themselves fulfill local demands by becoming producers of goods and services. We have been successful in achieving 100% chicken meat and eggs self sufficiency within the State. We are striving towards creating vital infrastructure for training, value addition and marketing in this sector to enable our people to become producers.



Social Security Mission

My Government has worked relentlessly to guarantee full socio-cultural and economic security to all section of the people on a larger canvass of human- centric development. Special dispensation in various forms and formats is bring provided to the needy and deserving sections of our citizens belonging to various social groups, differently abled persons, old aged and vulnerable groups. I wish my people to live a full life with freedom, dignity, self-respect and righteousness.



Skill Development Mission

The Skill Development Initiative was launched in 2003 and apart from the Directorate of Capacity Building, the State Institute of Capacity Building at Karfectar with state of the art facilities for residential training have been established. Under the Chief Minister's Self-Employment Scheme 5,780 youths have been covered for self-vocational ventures encompassing various agro-based activities and IT and Tourism related vocations. As a pioneering step, livelihood schools have been established in every constituency. Many boys and girls primarily from rural areas are undergoing different kinds of vocational upgradation trainings in such Institutes across the State.



Institutional framework

Steering committee chaired by me with the Hon'ble Ministers of Rural Development, Agriculture, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry, Tourism, Social Welfare, Cooperation as members will be constituted to lead the Mission.

Task force to be chaired by the Chief Secretary with members from the Departments of Planning and Development, Finance, Agriculture, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry, Tourism, Power, Social Welfare, Cooperation, marketing agencies, federations, banks and NGOs to formulate policy directives and guidelines, facilitate convergence and for performance evaluation.

Core group to be chaired by the Secretary-RM&DD, having representation of all the cells, important line departments and nominated members for coordination, planning, implementation and monitoring of the programmes and schemes.

Measuring success

In order to track progress and make changes as necessary, it is essential that we measure success regularly. This is also an important aspect of being accountable. Since our overall key policy directions are time-bound, our goals have measurable targets and outcomes which will be tracked over time. Already established processes, such as the regular evaluation and monitoring of programs, and the reporting of outcomes in departmental


Annual Reports submitted to the State Assembly will form a critical part of our ability to assess how we are performing. As we move forward, other indicators will also be added as necessary. Several reporting processes will be used like making full use of the institutional setup outlined above, having a disaggregated, household level, online web-enabled database which will track the socio-economic progress at the household level and others as well.


Appeal: Moving forward towards eliminating poverty


In conclusion, I wish to state that my Government has been waging a war against poverty, and the rural transformation that we seek is visible more than ever before. My government attaches the highest priority to the successful implementation of the poverty elimination programmes and is committed to realizing the Mission “Poverty Free Sikkim - 2013”. We are committed to make rural Sikkim poverty free and the engine of inclusive social and economic growth, where everyone is taken care of and loved.


I earnestly urge citizens to become more informed and to get involved in finding meaningful solutions to tackle poverty. While the Government is moving forward to achieve this Mission, we realize that we need the active participation of all the stakeholders. The formal launch of the Mission - “Poverty Free Sikkim - 2013” is the starting point of this journey. We will be working in partnership with citizens, corporate sector, voluntary agencies, academia, civil society and the community, to jointly achieve this Mission. Let's work together to prevent, reduce and finally eliminate poverty in Sikkim.


Thank you,

Pawan Chamling
Chief Minister of Sikkim

Date Published: 2016-02-25

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