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Authors: Muhammad, Luqman
Keywords: Applied Sciences
Agriculture & related technologies
Agricultural extension
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: In Pakistan, more than half of the population used to live in rural localities and depend upon farm and non-farm rural economy for their livelihoods. In these areas, persistent poverty and inadequate development indicators clearly describes their backwardness. In order to develop these rural dwellers, state (government) launched different rural development programmes during different regimes. These state-led programmes/initiatives left little impact on rural livelihoods. With special reference to North-West region (Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, KPK province) these initiatives gained substantial success as the province stands on 3rd rank in Human Development Index (HDI). Besides state, a number of Civil Society Organizations are also engaged in rural development efforts throughout the country including KPK province. In the broader concept of civil society the emergence of Social Movement Organizations (SMOs) were also assumed to play a significant role in rural development. These organizations claimed to be deeply rooted in the traditional and religious culture of the rural KPK society and have greater capacity to cater the real needs of rural poor. Sometimes they challenge the state departments in providing basic welfare services to the rural community as they claimed that they have greater capability to provide these services at their door steps efficiently. But, their actual practices and claims related to rural development have not been yet identified. Keeping in view these perspectives the current PhD research was designed to analyse the vision and actual practices of these organizations regarding rural development in the KPK. The study followed the case study approach and selected District Mansehra as the study area. Both qualitative and quantitative data were collected from both categories of respondents i.e. staff/volunteers/members of SMOs as well as rural community affiliated with the respective SMO. The data were analysed using SPSS and content analysis technique. It was concluded that the major focus of all the three SMOs was on rural areas with a variety of funding sources. In all the three SMOs majority of the staff/volunteers/members was working on voluntary basis. They were involved in wide variety of rural development work related to education, health, agriculture, advocacy, social mobilization, emergency relief services etc. to empower the suppressed and ignored entities of society. It is further concluded that all the three SMOs were following the theme of people-centered RD approach covering all aspects of sustainable rural development. The perceived reasons of rural poverty in the area were lack of education, employment and good governance policies by the state. Small size of agricultural land holdings, appeared prominent in the study area, was also one of the major reasons of rural poverty and inequality. All the SMOs had strong horizontal (with village level local organizations) as well as vertical (with state departments) interaction and linkages for bring social change. Various RD practices rendered by SMOs appeared more effective than efforts of the state as large majority of the rural community were highly satisfied with their RD efforts. This scenario explores the potential of SMOs as alternate RD services providers in case of general failure of the state. Rural community perceived that collaborative strategic governance by the state and civil society would be more effective initiative towards reducing rural poverty and inequality. In addition, this collaboration will also pave the way toward sustainable rural development in KPK and ultimately in the entire country. In this way, mitigation of existing challenges such as food security and food sovereignty in the country will become easier. In view of these findings study recommends the development of partnership between NGOs/CBOs/FOs (including religious ones) and government (state) departments for efficient and effective delivery of rural extension/advisory services to the community; seeking for the sustainable rural development.
Appears in Collections:PhD Thesis of All Public / Private Sector Universities / DAIs.

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