Ashutosh Nanda is the Team Coordinator in PRADAN's Narharpur team. He has 11 years of grassroots experience and has expertise in Integrated Natural Resource Management (INRM), Sustainable Agriculture, Livestock Promotion, Governance, and Strengthening People's Institution. He has been instrumental in integrating watershed development with MGNREGA in the Narharpur block in Chhattisgarh. Ashutosh has completed graduation in Forestry from Odisha University of Agriculture Technology (OUAT) and Masters in Rural Management from KIIT School of Rural Management, KIIT University.
Decentralised participatory planning through MGNREGA to create durable livelihood assets like farm ponds, orchards, etc, has helped the farmers to increase their livelihood baskets and stopped distressed migration
Using the provisions under MGNREGA to gainfully engage the thousands of migrant labour, who are fleeing big cities and returning to their villages, is a productive way to turn the global crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic into an opportunity for creating assets that support rural livelihoods and lead to self-sufficiency.
Making work such as the construction of toilets under MGNREGA conditional upon meeting the Swachch Bharat Mission targets puts villagers in diffiuclties till the SHG women become aware of their rights and entitlements, which they then proceed to collectively ask for, winning the admiration of the officials
Challenging the lobbies of contractors, influential people and others, to break the nexus around MGNREGA, the women’s collectives of Barethinbahara persevere, amid great opposition and political muscle, to eventually get the village to work together for its common good and welfare