Jayapur, Varanasi: Off the Grand Trunk Road in Sevapuri assembly constituency in Varanasi district, a single metal road with bus stops that are plastered with photographs of Prime Minister Narendra Modi leads to the village of Jayapur.

A poster near the village centre announces that the village has been adopted as an adarsh or model village.

The sleepy village has been a centre of activity since Modi adopted it under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana in 2014. And understandably a transformation is underway.

“Soon after Prime Minister Modi adopted the village, there was a lot of work that happened. We got new roads, solar electricity provisions were made, toilets were constructed and we also got piped water. There were a lot of non-governmental organizations and private companies who came to work in the village at that time," said 74-year-old Uma Shankar Patel, a farmer in the village.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi adopted the Jayapur village in Varanasi in November 2014 as part of the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana. Photo: HT
Prime Minister Narendra Modi adopted the Jayapur village in Varanasi in November 2014 as part of the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana. Photo: HT

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According to Census 2011, the village has around 3,000 residents and 400 households. Of the residents, 1,000 are illiterate. The village population is mostly upper caste, with 324 people reporting as other backward classes (OBC) and 47 residents identifying themselves as belonging to scheduled castes and tribes.

The toilets in Jayapur that were set up under Swachh Bharat Mission. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint
The toilets in Jayapur that were set up under Swachh Bharat Mission. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

The village is seeing a makeover with more banks opening branches, the installation of an ATM (automated teller machine), the setting up of a school and construction of houses under the central housing scheme. Residents welcome the development, but rue the lack of administrative follow-up.

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“Work under the scheme was good but it was short lived. There were solar panels installed but people have now started selling them. The piped water supply also failed but the authorities are said to be working on a new plan," said Manish Kumar Vishkarma, a 17-year-old resident of Jayapur.

He says that employment continues to be the biggest issue in the village.

“There are schools and colleges in this village and in nearby areas but no job opportunities," he said.

Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint
Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

Residents say that toilets that were constructed under Prime Minister Modi’s flagship scheme—Swachh Bharat Mission—have also started to crumble.

“There were community toilets which were built near the bus stand. Two years later, they now have broken plastic doors, leaving them unusable," Uma Shankar Patel said.

The Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana puts the onus on Members of Parliament (MP) to adopt villages and develop their socio-economic and physical infrastructure with a holistic perspective. Under the scheme, MPs have to develop three Adarsh Grams each by 2019.

A temple in Jayapur village. Solar panels, as seen on the far right, were set up at the village, but people have now started selling them. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint
A temple in Jayapur village. Solar panels, as seen on the far right, were set up at the village, but people have now started selling them. Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

The village in Sevapuri constituency goes to the polls in the last phase of assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh on 8 March.

Currently, the constituency is represented by the Samajwadi Party (SP) in the assembly.

“Since the PM has adopted the village, it has got attention. We are hoping that the same will happen to the state if the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) comes to power. It is not that the state government has done bad work. In fact, the MLA (member of legislative assembly) here (Surendra Singh Patel) has done good work along with chief minister Akhilesh Yadav," said Bachha Lal Patel, who owns a cycle repair shop in the village.

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