This Progress Report, which has been delayed by almost 5 months in its writing due to various reasons, covers an eventful period of 17 months during which many happenings have contributed to the village CSUs coming to age with a felt presence in the 4 Extension Areas. It was also a time when ADATS/DDS further matured as an organisation.
A probing self examination took place in each and every CSU, wherein our position with regard to the environment was hammered out through an unsparingly critical and constructive dialogue we had with ICCO on sustainable land use and poverty alleviation. Many experts and knowledgeable well wishers got involved in this debate and ADATS/DDS as well as the Coolies immensely profited.
In December 1993 Coolies in the Extensions decided to contest the Gram Panchayat Elections by fielding their own candidates. This struggle, which occupied most of November and December, did a lot to establish the Coolie Sangha as a body with political teeth and presence in the Extension taluks.
In the latter half of 1993 a new partnership relationship was forged between ADATS/DDS and our northern partners — ICCO, NOVIB and EZE. A Consortium was formed to continue Coolie Sangha building work in northern Kolar district for the next 10 years. Each and every CSU was involved in the intense discussions on implications and possibilities which led to this momentous decision.
And most important of all, Coolies in the Extensions were participant observers at developments in Bagepalli where more than 100 CSUs made serious preparations for the withdrawal of the NGDO by March 1995. ADATS itself went through some very intense self reflection to discover the postintervention role that we would have to play. This was a rare opportunity which Coolie Sangha functionaries and ADATS/DDS staff alike grabbed to the fullest to enrich themselves and develop further conceptual clarity on the Coolie Sangha Model of Development and the subtle nuances that guide the 2 Organisations policy.
This report is heavily interspersed with 42 brief examples in order to convey the mood behind the happenings.