The Ministry of Science & Technology has launched Pandit Deen Dayal Upadhayay Vigyan Gram Sankul Pariyojana to formulate and implement appropriate S&T interventions for sustainable development through cluster approach in Uttarakhand.
Under the scheme, Department of Science and Technology (DST) will adopt few clusters of villages in Uttarakhand and transform them to become self-sustainable in time bound manner through tools of S&T. Local resources and locally available skill sets will be utilised using S&T under the scheme for substantial value addition for local produce and services which can sustain rural population.
The areas selected under these clusters will process and add value to milk, honey, horticulture and local crops, herbal tea, mushroom, forest produce, medicinal & aromatic plants and traditional craft and handloom. This project will also ensure, stringent product and process control interventions for energy and water conservation.
The project will also give emphasis to practice of agriculture, agro-based cottage industries and animal husbandry in an eco-friendly manner. It will mainly undertake post-harvest processing of Kiwi, Cherry, Strawberry, Tulsi, Adrak, Badi Elaichi through solar drying technology, extraction of apricot oil using cold press technology.
It will directly or indirectly about a lakh of people in four identified clusters of 60 villages in Uttarakhand. It will help in creating models that are appropriate for different altitudes and could be replicated in other hill states. It will promote sustainable employment and livelihood options within the clusters such as eco-tourism, naturopathy and yoga, are also planned to be promoted. Further, it will ensure that local communities are not compelled to migrate from their native places in search of jobs and livelihoods.