World Bank Funds $800 Million Welfare Projects In India

World Bank Funds $800 Million Welfare Projects In India

by Arun Kumar Das - Thursday, December 17, 2020 10:28 AM IST
World Bank Funds $800 Million Welfare Projects In IndiaA view of the World Bank building in Washington. (GettyImages)
  • The projects will help many families access better income opportunities, education, water supply and social protection schemes.

Extending support for a range of development initiatives, including agriculture programmes for tribal households in Chhattisgarh, the World Bank has approved four projects in India worth over $800 million.

Enhancing quality education in Nagaland and improving the safety and performance of existing dams across various states of the country are among the four projects being supported by the World Bank.

“The four projects will support India’s efforts to build back better by creating a sustainable and resilient economy. Development work today has an additional responsibility – to help poor and vulnerable families roll back the adverse impact that the pandemic has had on their lives,” said Junaid Ahmad, country director, World Bank India.

“These projects will help many such families access better income opportunities, education, water supply and benefit from the expanded social protection schemes of the government.”

The $100 million Chhattisgarh Inclusive Rural and Accelerated Agriculture Growth Project (CHIRAAG) will develop sustainable production systems that allow tribal households in remote areas of Chhattisgarh to engage in round-the-year production of diversified and nutritious food.

It will be implemented in the southern tribal-majority region of the state where a large population is undernourished and poor. The project will benefit over 180,000 households from about 1,000 villages in eight districts of Chhattisgarh.

In Nagaland, the $68 million enhancing classroom teaching and resources project envisages improvement in classroom instruction; create opportunities for the professional development of teachers; and build technology systems to provide students and teachers with more access to integrated online learning as well as allow better monitoring of policies and programmes.

Such an approach will complement conventional delivery models and help mitigate the challenges posed by Covid-19.

The second of the ‘Accelerating India's Covid-19 social protection response’ programme involving $400 million will support India’s efforts at providing social assistance to the poor and vulnerable households severely impacted by the pandemic.

The first programme worth $750 million was approved in May 2020. It enabled immediate cash transfers to about 320 million individual bank accounts identified through pre-existing national social protection schemes under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana (PMGKY) and additional food rations to about 800 million individuals.

The second operation will complement the expansion of India’s safety net programmes to create a portable social protection platform ensuring food and cash support for poor households, urban migrants, and unorganised sector workers across state boundaries.

The second dam improvement and rehabilitation project worth $250 million will improve the safety and performance of existing dams across various states of India. It will strengthen dam safety by building guidelines; bringing in global experience; and introducing newer technologies.

The project will help sustain the livelihoods and food security of millions of Indians who depend on irrigated agriculture and enable farmers to shift out of pumping ground water, thereby, reducing energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Arun Kumar Das is a senior journalist covering railways. He can be contacted at

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