IntroductionMahatma Gandhi had once said that 'The future of India lies in its villages'. Even today, villages are like the backbone of a country where almost seventy percent of our population dwell. In order to call a village an ideal one, it should have the following traits:
Villagers or InhabitantsA village is formed, governed and maintained by its villagers. The People of an ideal village should be honest and hard-working. They should possess qualities like tolerance to every faith and religion, brotherhood and unity. They should live like a large family and help one another in the hour of need. They should have a sense of discipline and a spirit of service before self. They should keep themselves abreast of not only the happenings of the village but also of the country and the world as a whole. They should always be active and cheerful. Simple living and high thinking should be their motto in life.
Basic Infra-structuresBesides the people, an ideal village should have the following basic infra-structures:
Good ConnectivityGood connectivity is one of the most essential requirements of an ideal village. The village should be well-connected to other parts of the country by roads and also by rails, if possible. The streets and lanes of the village should also be well maintained so that people can easily commute from one part to another.
HousesThe houses should be neat and clean. They should be well-ventilated to allow free flow of light and air. There should be good arrangement for proper sanitation and drainage system.
Sufficient sources of potable waterAn ideal village should have good supply of clean drinking water. There should be enough wells, tube-wells and even submersibles to meet the needs of the villagers. It would help everyone get good drinking water. There should also be separate ponds for villagers to take bath and to get water for their cattle.
Proper sanitation and drainage facilitiesAn ideal village should have good system of sanitation and drainage so that dirty water and waste can be easily drained out. It would help the village keep clean and free from many diseases caused by filthy water. It would also save the villagers from water-logging during the rainy season.
Pasture land for cattleAlmost every villager living in a village keeps cattle. There should be enough paster land for grazing of their cattle. Generally, it should be within the village, at a distance from the houses or just outside the village
Food and fodderThe villagers grow food and vegetables not only for themselves but also for the urban people. They also grow fodder for their cattle. They also produce dairy, poultry and other products for their own consumption as well as for supply to urban areas. There should be proper arrangements in the village itself to provide them with good seeds and all assistance related to their produces.
Wholesale market within the villageMost of the people living in villages are farmers by profession. They grow food crops, cash crops and fodders in their fields. While they consume the food crops for themselves and the fodder for their cattle, the cash crops the other surplus products are sold in the market to meet their other requirements. There should be provision for wholesale market in the village itself so that the villagers can sell their surplus products there at reasonable rates and get good return. This would save them from the hands of the middle men and bring prosperity.
Cottage IndustriesAn ideal village should have well-established small cottage industries so that the artisans and small farmers can utilize their skills and extra time to produce articles necessary for day to day use and earn a handsome profit by selling them in the market.
Healthcare Centres and hospitalsBesides food, the other most important aspect of human life is health. An ideal village should have proper facilities taking care of the health of the villagers as well as of their cattle and poultry. There should be one-two healthcare centres depending upon the population of the village. A small hospital also adds to the quality of such a village. Besides health centres for the villagers, veterinary dispensaries should also be there to take care of their live-stock.
Educational facilitiesAn ideal village should have proper arrangements of education for the children. There should be Primary schools and High schools so that the little children need not go out of the village for education. Primary education should be free and compulsory for every child up to a certain age.There should also be soft skills training centres and preferably an adult education centre for the elders who want to get education.
In addition to the above, some other facilities like a post-office, college, playground for children and a meeting place for elders should also be part of an ideal village.
ConclusionIn a nutshell, an ideal village should have all possible provisions and basic intra-structures for the all-round development of the people living there. The life in such a village would be such as would never lure a person to leave his home and dowel in an urban area.
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The author has enlisted many essential conditions for an ideal village. Indeed the above listed conditions will make an ideal village but she forgot to mention some important things which are very vital for every village in the country.
1. Electricity : Availability of electricity is must in an ideal village. If villages are backbone of our country then electricity is the backbone of a village. Electricity not only lights up the life of students living in villages but it also lights up the life of every farmer there. We know that in the last few years there has been uncertainty in the monsoon. Poor monsoon causes the failure of crops but if there will be electricity then tube-well can be used to irrigate the fields.
2. Irrigation Facility : Generally farmers live in the villages. They are largely dependent on agriculture for their livelihood. Failures of crop can create a big financial problem for them and this is the reason of increase in the rate of suicide among farmers in our country. The main reason responsible for failures of crops in our country is lack of irrigation facility. There should be proper linkage of canals, rivers and ponds in a village. Tube-wells should also be there in sufficient numbers.
3. Village Chaupal : Village's common house or village chaupal should also be there in a village where villagers could gather to discuss things related to their village or farming. This house can also be used to announce different programs and scheme run by the government from time to time. There should be a television, a radio set and some newspapers to keep villagers up to date with all the latest happening around the country.
4. Library : There should also be a library in the village for both students and elders. Many of the villagers are illiterate but they can be educated under youth education program run by the government and the library can be of great help for them.
5. Police Station : There should also be a police station in or near the village to settle dispute between villagers. Naxalites also create problem for villagers, so there should be a police station at a walking distance from the village for the safety of people living there.