HYDERABAD: An arm of the World Bank will lend Rs 475 crore ($75 million) to the Andhra Pradesh Government for implementing a rural growth project.

The fund from International Development Association (IDA) will be used for implementing the Rural Inclusive Growth Project (RIGP), aimed at enhancing agricultural incomes of small/marginal farmers and ensuring increased access to services related to health, nutrition, sanitation and social entitlements, a senior official said today.
RIGP will target small and marginal farmers in 5,000 villages in the state. Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu recently discussed the project with a team of officials from the World Bank.

It will focus on increasing economic opportunities for small and marginal farmers, especially from Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, and develop a network of social enterprises for food, nutrition and sanitation, he said.

The project would help the State government in creating an enabling policy framework across sectors through the seven missions it has established.

A targeted 2.5 lakh small and marginal farmers would be supported under the RIGP to increase their incomes by at least 50 per cent by enhancing productivity and improving their access to markets, the official said.

Investments would be made to improve access to services in the areas of health, nutrition, water and sanitation to boost human development by increasing coverage and effectiveness of social safety net programmes, he said.

About five lakh households, particularly those belonging to SCs and STs, would benefit from this.

“Community-led approach will be followed under RIGP to improve access to water and sanitation services in the targeted villages adopting.

“Saturation mode will be adopted so as to cover all households and rural institutions like schools, anganwadis (childcare centres) and health centres and help them achieve open defecation-free status,” the official added.