Community Development Programme

Post Independence, the first major development programme launched in India was Community Development Programme, 1952. Core philosophy was overall development of rural areas and people’s participation.

Key Features

This programme was formulated to provide an administrative framework through which the government might reach to the district, tehsil / taluka and village level. All the districts of the country were divided into “Development Blocks” and a “Block Development Officer (BDO)” was made in charge of each block. Below the BDO were appointed the workers called Village Level Workers (VLW) who were responsible to keep in touch with 10-12 villages. So, a nationwide structure was started to be created. Thousands of BDOs and VLW’s were trained for the job of carrying out array of government programmes and make it possible to reach the government to villages. Top authority was “Community Development Organization” and a Community Development Research Center was created with best academic brains of the country at that time.

In the first five year plan, the emphasis was on agriculture. The food production started growing and by the end of first five year plan, the food import decreased substantially. However, the bad monsoon in the first two three years of second five year plan the food production again tumbled down and the production was now around pre-1954 levels.


The community development programme later became overburden and a need to sharply focus the agriculture was felt. So the first programme which sharply focused agriculture was launched in 1960-61 and this programme was called “Intensive Agriculture Development program (IADP)”


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