‘Sustainable Communities can be developed by the empowered citizens themselves, and only then such development would sustain and peace would prevail…’

logo Even after seven decades of intervention by multiple development agencies including the govt. yet, a vast part of the country is still far from achieving expected results. The challenges of illiteracy, early marriage, school drop-out, domestic violence and unsafe economic migration leading to human trafficking etc, remain unresolved. India still lags far behind in Human Development and Global Hunger Index compare to other democracies.

My firm realization is that, until the un-organized citizens are organized & empowered with relevant tools and skills they lack, regardless of their socio-cultural adherence, enabling them to emerge as united strength … and capable to take part in Decision-making Process… as some of the Prime Steps for the development to take root and sustain etc, or else no amount of external investment can lift these vulnerable communities out of their dire circumstance! To ensure Good Governance with Social Justice and Re-distribution of Wealth require clear policies with De-centralized Governing System… backed by vibrant Democracy or else the wealth and decision-making power will remain only in the hands of a few.

These imperatives have led me to develop ‘Citizen’s Parliament Authority Network’-(CPAN), which is a path-breaking innovative initiative, carefully crafted ‘Dynamic Social Engineering Process of organizing the most un-organized and ordinary citizens and empowers the powerless to emerge as United Strength’ against any aggression or exploitation, and a ‘System of Advancing Democracy’ with a ‘Whole System Approach’ based on a Shared Vision with Common Goals. In reality, ‘CPAN’ is one of the dynamic initiatives that ensures the ‘Decision-making Power’ remain with the empowered citizens enabling them to resolve many of their challenges locally by themselves.

Among other challenges, the Leadership Development Curricula of ‘CPAN’ helps to create an enabling condition for the citizens to participate and express their views without fear or coercion enabling ordinary citizens to rise-up as Dynamic Leaders with Accountability…thereby laying the foundations for a ‘True Democracy’. The citizens then wilfully join hands and take part in decision-making process, monitor and accelerate the development activities with confidence, thereby making the positive changes possible. Interestingly, the placement and inbuilt leadership structure of ‘CPAN’ enable any citizen to emerge as dynamic leader and not a powerhouse. The ‘CPAN’ system further helps the community members in Reforming Socio-Cultural Institutes responsible for discriminations against girls and women of their legitimate rights to nutrition, education and reproductive health… leading to end early marriage, domestic violence, unsafe economic migration etc that give birth to a host of other challenges. Nevertheless, whatever we do, our actions must result in lasting peace which would ultimately sustain the development out-comes. In fact, the adolescent girls we’ve empowered through ‘CPAN’, they’re now capable to decide their age of marriage, family size, choosing profession etc, in their families.

With this confidence, we’re on a special Mission called ‘Save Sundarbans’, and as Strategic Approach we’ve adopted five islands in the region, with a comprehensive empowerment-development programs with the goals of ‘Re-building Local Economy, Food Security and Poverty Alleviation’ through Sustainable Agri-practices and Social Entrepreneurship; and Restoration of Coastal Ecology with Disaster Risk Management’ with a special focus to rehabilitate the ‘Widows and Orphans of Wild Animal Affected Families’- (WWAF).

Friends, would you join me in this challenging venture you’ve never known or tasted what is called living a harmonious life with nature …! As I end this article let me quote of mine: “The toughness in life makes a person either bitter to leave, or makes a person better to live… then, it’s for us to decide and act upon what is appropriate and right for our children”.

– Dr. Arup Karali – SME & Author of ‘HHM, CPAN, Applied-4M’