Once considered a safe haven by outlawed militant outfits, Nepalibasti area in West Tripura is now reaping the peace dividend and has benefited from government initiated developmental activities.
With the return of peace, things have changed dramatically here. Villagers are now availing the benefits of several developmental schemes like Pradhan Mantri Gram Sarak Yojana, MGNREGA and Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.
"I work in the paddy fields, but in absence of any work in the village, I also get work under MGNREGA scheme as I have a job card," said Mankumari Debbarma, a villager.
"We get Rs. 150 everyday for working here. At present, we are engaged in the construction of a road that will facilitate smooth movement of vehicles. The students can go to their schools and vehicles will be able to take patients quickly to hospitals in case of an emergency," added Santa Sarkar, another villager
Womenfolk here have taken up sericulture and mulberry production under government schemes. The government encourages them to produce silkworms and assists them through training and provision of fertilizers.
"I produce silkworms in my house and it is an additional income for the family. I earn more than Rs 10,000 annually. The government has helped us set up this unit. The market price of silkworms is around Rs 220 per kg," said Smritilekah Debbarma, a silkworm producer.
With improving incomes, the dropout rate of students has also come down.
Free mid-day meals, books, study materials, dresses, and various stipends under 'Sarva Siksha Abhiyan' have also helped give a boost to education in the villages.
"I am a class seven student. We get free meals, books, dresses and other study materials in the school. I love to go to school. Earlier there was an insurgency problem but now there is no fear and we go to school regularly," said Bishal Debbarma, a student. (ANI)