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Home > CGPL Mundra > Testimonials


“I have been in Kutch since the 1980s when the area was severely under developed. Economic and social development was ushered into Kutch, after the 2001 earthquake, when industrial investments picked up rapid pace. Mundra started developing much before that because of its long coastline and established port. Development of the Mundra Port led to many ancillary industries starting in the area, which gave a huge push to self-employment. People also have increased employment opportunities due to the establishment of industries like CGPL. More than the increasing employment levels in the area, CGPL has been a step ahead in supporting surrounding communities. The Gaushala (cowshed) initiative has been a benchmark project for promoting and protecting animal husbandry as an occupation. Villagers have been enthusiastic about the initiative as it provides regular fodder needed to enhance incomes from animal husbandry. I have circulated, informed and presented this practice amongst many organizations, Government bodies and to the Cabinet Ministry. CGPL has also invested in improving grazing lands in these areas, which has made the milk yield of the cattle higher, thereby increasing the income of the villagers. Their efforts to enhance livelihoods in traditional occupations have been a great boon in surrounding areas. They have undertaken interventions in various other thematic areas for holistic development of their neighboring communities. I am certain that through its sustained and focused CR initiatives, CGPL will add significantly to the momentum of growth and development in Mundra.”

“CGPL is always involved in helping rural areas avail of banking extension services. They have continuously taken our help to spread information on the importance of banking and financial inclusion, filling a check, opening accounts, bank deposits, money credits, withdrawals, ATM use, etc to their community members. HDFC has a Tunda gram panchayat account, which makes the villagers have more faith in savings and use of banking facilities. A person has been appointed in the villages to consult on and solve local banking issues. With CGPL in the area vouching for villagers, we are able to trust them, help open accounts and provide credit. The financial inclusion in rural areas, achieved with the Company’s presence has been commendable”.

“Employment is required for sustainability and empowerment of people. 5 years ago, employment opportunities were scarce. Rain fed agriculture, animal husbandry and handicrafts prevailed as main occupations which gave people measly incomes. With the advent of companies in the area, employment increased in construction work and ancillary industries and shops. There has been a constant dialogue between the village and CGPL to improve and provide employment options, which can make the youth more employable. The CR team has been very forthcoming in this regard and plans to conduct baseline surveys pertaining to employment provisions. The intervention of CGPL to invest in Gaushalas is a great and unique approach which has resulted due to CGPL’s concern for the mitigation of Gauchar (grazing) land. The Company thought of supporting the cattle owners through construction of Gaushala that too on their own land and round the year fodder is provided to the cattle. This intervention has also resulted in an increase in the number of cattle in the vicinity. In 2007, the population of cattle was just 500 and now the population is more than 1500. This has increased the livelihood prospects of the cattle owners in the vicinity and in turn, their quality of life. This was possible due to series of discussions with CGPL and their pro activeness in supporting the cattle owners of the region. The importance of education has been realized in our village since people have understood that jobs would only be provided to those who are academically qualified and those who are unskilled and uneducated would not be able to get jobs. CGPL has done commendable work for the development of infrastructure in our villages. Construction of Community Halls (Samajwadis), a state of the art cricket ground, gardens, animal sheds, street lights, RO water plants, etc. has increased amenities and built sustainable social capital. CGPL’s team constantly conducts meetings with us and consults us on developmental and other social issues through the VDAC. Health issues also exist in the village to a great extent. People have to travel more than 15 kms to reach a hospital. CGPL caters to this problem through their health camps. CGPL is always consulting us and finding solutions to address social and economic problems. These interventions and interactions of CGPL have increased harmonious relations with the community nearby.”

“The Company has undertaken varied initiatives for the development of the village. There were no social and economic provisions in the village before, now there are development efforts and employment opportunities all around us. They have provided extensive livelihood support, tools to fishermen like fishing nets, built approach roads for our community and invested in other infrastructure amenities. These interventions have helped fishermen increase their productivity and in turn their income levels. Education plays a very important part in any area’s development. With their various interventions in education the area will definitely prosper in the coming years. We are certain that the Company’s presence will bring in a new wave of development in our village. Our journey for prosperity and development with CGPL has started, with a focus on partnerships, and we believe that together we will be able to build a sustainable and happy community.”

“A few years ago, the problems in Mundra were many. Issues of water scarcity and salinity, ailments like cardiac problems, joint pains, child mortality, lack of education, etc. were widely prevalent. CGPL entered our villages by gaining people’s confidence through community dialogue and participation. I oversee the operations of an education trust. Primary education is a major issue in rural areas. The mentality of parents about education, higher education facilities being very far, the entire village catchment area having only one school, etc are some of the many reasons for low education levels. CGPL has aided the development of education through its varied programmes. They are currently discussing the start of a bus service for children in different villages. This will increase enrollment and attendance levels due to increased accessibility to schools. Medical check-ups for children are also done by CGPL in schools. They set up RO plants in collaboration with local bodies which lead to ownership and recycled income in the village. Earlier, people did not know or understand what development is. Local residents had no exposure. The Company has led to broadening of the vision of people. Dams and regular water availability in villages has increased living standards. Job opportunities have increased and so education has been given more importance. The community halls that CGPL built have strengthened associations and facilitated meetings for discussions on development issues. ‘Kutchis’ have a very important role to play in CGPL’s development and the company always acknowledges that. CGPL has a great reputation and we have a lot of confidence in their abilities to solve problems. Wonders will be created with CGPL- Tata Power’s dedication and commitment to community development.”

“The Fisheries and Port Department primarily focuses on the development of marine talukas and districts by working extensively towards upgrading livelihoods in these areas. A number of schemes for the social and economic upliftment of fishermen communities have been devised and upgraded. These include provision of subsidized solar lights, kerosene and fishing nets along with marketing subsidies across all coastal districts. The department works to ensure fishermen security, boat registrations, assistance in procuring fishing licenses, regular monitoring of livelihood conditions and preparation of bio metric cards for fishermen. Our work and programmes are strengthened by our partnerships with different organizations. CGPL is one of the most noteworthy of them. In Mundra, small time fishermen don’t have equipment and find it difficult to survive from traditional farming methods. Many complain of pollution causing deterrence in their professions. Majority of them lack basic infrastructure in their villages and at their work sites. CGPL has recognized and made ample efforts in the direction of improving their situations. Modern equipment for fishing have been provided by CGPL to the fishermen community in addition to cooking pans, solar lights, etc. which enhances their quality of living and the profitability from fishing. They have given top priority to increase education levels and infrastructure in their surrounding villages. CGPL provides assistance with a bottom up, participatory approach and always make efforts looking at local contexts and needs. CGPL is doing substantial work for fishermen and constantly aim to build stronger links to their stakeholders and people from their surrounding village communities.”
- DR. P.C. MALI,

“I have been in Kutch for 36 years and the director of VRTI for the past three years. CGPL has always understood that partnerships with NGOs reduce corruption and uneven distribution of wealth issues; that we have the legitimacy and accountability in the area and would be able to extend the Company’s missions better. CGPL has attached considerable importance to natural resource management, the environment and its surrounding community and stakeholders. It has been a privilege to work with CGPL since they have laid heavy emphasis on consultations and stakeholder dialogues which in the long run is important for projects to be a success. Economic gain has been achieved in the area because of CGPL since roads and infrastructure has increased and investments have been made in Green Belts and environmental initiatives. The main areas looked at in partnership with CGPL are Tragadi and Nana Bhadiya villages. We undertook baseline research, stakeholder mappings, needs assessments, consulted CGPL for interventions and implemented their projects. The Gaushala (animal shed) intervention has had an outstanding impact in providing livelihoods and earning higher incomes in beneficiary villages. There are never any caste issues in implementation and devising programmes, since CGPL conducts regular Lok Dayro (Cultural Promotion) programmes which bridges the gap and increases community solidarity, respect and interactions amongst communities. CGPL has perpetually stressed on sustainable and needs based models and focused on gaining trust and talking to stakeholders. Everyone’s voice in the community is heard in their catchment and vicinity villages- not just the rich and influential. The field and managerial staff of CGPL always stay connected to communities through regular meetings, discussions and dialogue. The company has always respected VRTI’s mission and principles of development and never involved us in petty politics, risk mitigation or legitimacy issues. They have always been forthcoming, enthusiastic and supportive with our developmental plans and activities. They assist us with dedication and firm conviction in our organization’s mission. CGPL supports us with monetary, monitoring and personnel contributions and have paved the way for development at a village and individual level.”

“Mundra and Mandvi villages have seen many positive changes with CGPL’s efforts. In the next five years I see a higher economic growth of the area, nearby land prices will increase and in turn benefit the people. The public spaces and gardens constructed by CGPL have been beneficial to the community and increased mobilization and recreation of people. The launch of the educational learning stations in the name of SUJAAN, have been of great help to us to increase education facilities and spark interest in students to attend school. CGPL has given educational kits to students; this has attracted more student enrollments and less drop outs in the area. The schools have requested for more educational kits for the coming academic year and CGPL has readily agreed to support this initiative. They are always supportive and helpful when required, in this similar fashion. CGPL has ushered in a new dynamism and positive outlook in people with their efforts”.

“Kalaraksha works for training and promoting local artisans. We have a one year training programme, free for women and charged at Rs. 10,000 for men. At the end of the year the artisans have a convocation ceremony and exhibition fair where there is a jury to test their skills and see their work. This is concluded with a fashion show where we get famous models from Mumbai to walk the ramp and model the artisans’s work. CGPL has been supporting and sponsoring the fair since the last 3-4 years. The fair increases awareness about design principles, gives the artisans more product options, merges traditional and contemporary art, making it more market oriented and pushes the use of natural fibers. The fair promotes local artisans and trades since the criteria of enrollment in the programme, is that the student should be from the region and he/she should be a traditional artisan. The fair provides a very huge market platform for the artisans as varied buyers come to attend the show and place orders for their designs. Other similar smaller organizations attend the fair, learn about different arts and are motivated to take up such projects. The artisans have grown in their own craft and deal with the market place much more confidently. Women are now very aware and vocal and through this programme an outlet for creativity is provided. Sponsorship support for local artisans, teachers and students to international fairs in U.S and all over the world, is the instrumental support extended by CGPL in preserving the local art and furthering our mission. CGPL has always been a great support in our mission and interventions.”

“Hole in the wall (HiWEL) was started by Dr.Sugata Mitra at Delhi in 1999 as an NIIT subsidiary and later, a World Bank and IFC funded project. The programme has been tested and used in rural and urban areas, by state Governments, under the “Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan” of the Central Government and internationally in places like Cambodia. HiWEL’s main aim is to provide children with an exposure to technology apart from televisions and radios. Information and Communication Technology (ICT) systems break the barriers to information in education. The computers under the HiWEL programme train and orient children in three areas – English, Computers and Mathematics. CGPL requested us to launch 5 HiWEL learning stations in schools of their surrounding villages. We undertake a baseline study in the area before we start any intervention and the one in Mundra villages was undertaken in July 2011. We learnt that there were high dropout rates, low retention rates, children were very poor in English and computers and showed tremendous potential in mathematics. The school did have computers but they were inaccessible to students. We launched the project in collaboration with CGPL when the school admissions were on. An impact study was conducted again in December 2011 with the same sample as the baseline study. Results showed considerable improvements in our content assimilation test which assesses a child on English, computers and math’s learning. The teachers of the school have been delighted with the program since it has also helped in maintaining child’s interest and teacher’s learning. Children have started taking part in the sessions and are able to practice what they learn on these computers. Teachers as well as students have begun to observe, replicate and understand interactive methods of teaching. All this has been made possible due to CGPL’s initiative of launching our programme. We aim to reach every student and teacher in the community, creating an ownership in them for the learning stations. CGPL’s focus is on sustainable development. Our focus is on increasing mainstream and institutionalized ICT, taking into account local area specifications. Both the organizations have gelled exceptionally well due to their similar goals and principles and have become a strong team. The faith for CGPL, I have seen in the eyes of its surrounding communities is fantastic. We could not have asked for a better, people centric organization like CGPL, as our partner.”

“WASMO undertakes a participatory rural approach towards water supply and sanitation. The Government passed a programme for primary schools to set up RO and UV plants to reduce the high TDS in drinking water. When studies were undertaken in this area, we found that more than 1000 TDS existed in the water creating major health hazards. We approached CGPL to support us in setting up RO plants for 12 schools and they readily agreed. They regularly monitor the programmes and hold consultations & meetings with us. CGPL has also formed a water committee of the children in the schools which was an important value addition for the project. CGPL is definitely one of our most forthcoming and supportive partners in Mundra.”

“I have been working in the bank since 1984. In the last few years, Mundra has become a full-fledged town with immense development. The bank has managed to increase accounts in rural areas considerably, due to the presence of CGPL. The focused intervention of the CR team for financial inclusion of communities is admirable. CGPL has given a lot of guidance to women in the village to form stronger SHGs. There are usually 10-20 people in a group and they contribute between Rs. 10-50 monthly. They use this money for internal lending for various purposes. It is empowering only if they use the money to generate income, for example, buy a cow which will give them returns. Investing money in income generating activities leads to stronger SHGs. There are regular meetings, trainings and workshops for SHGs through CGPL. Women have become more aware; they attend meetings and trainings and pass on that knowledge to their group. The future looks bright with the Company also taking responsibilities of providing job opportunities and increasing the quality of education in this area.”




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