The success story of Jhargaon, a nondescript hamlet in rural Gumla that is being converted into a model village, will soon be up on the silver screen.
The village, which received a pat from chief minister Arjun Munda during his visit earlier this year, has become the subject of a documentary film being shot by Unicef.
Sources said the members of the world body had already visited and wrapped up a round of shooting in the village, with a second stint scheduled to take place later this month. Once ready, the documentary — highlighting the overall development activities taking place— would not only be shown in other Jharkhand villages, but those in other states of the country too.
“The documentary is being shot in such a way so that it helps unite the villagers towards making efforts for development. The film can also be used as a training material in matters relating to development in a village,” said Job Zachariah, chief of Unicef in Jharkhhand. He added that the documentary would be of 40 minutes.
Jhargaon, a sleepy hamlet in Toto panchayat of tribal dominated Gumla district, was chosen to be developed as a model village back in January 2010. The district administrative officials converged various schemes of the state and the Centre to ensure total development, mobilized the residents through several meetings and encouraged them to shape their own destinies.
The response they got in turn was overwhelming too, with enthusiastic villagers creating a mango orchard in 47acres of fallow land, pooling land together for group farming, banning liquor in the locality and sending their children to schools, instead of cow grazing, daily.
The 1,000 odd residents also set up an administrative system of ministers, wherein several selected nominees were entrusted with the responsibility of taking care of various sectors like health, drinking water and sanitation, mother and child development, agriculture and animal husbandry.
So if a child was out of school, it was the education minister’s responsibility to ensure that he was enrolled back in it. The health minister, likewise took care that all pregnant women were accorded proper care.
The numbers in the primary school, which earlier had only 35 students in it, shot up dramatically after the development activities were launched. The school, in turn, adopted the “learning through games” technique, which kept the children interested.
All these aspects will be shown in the film.
“No child is out of school now. Also, the parents have now understood the importance of education. When all our children gain higher education, will we realise the actual importance of the small decision that we took two years of sending them to schools,” said Sushil Kujur, education minister.
The Unicef video production team also will meet former deputy commissioner of Gumla, Rahul Sharma, the man who had mooted the idea of converting Jhargaon into a model village.