4.d) Impact an development policy
Comilla has definitely had a strong impact an Pakistan's
development policy. In this respect. the adoption of the Pilot
project in rural works as integral part of the Third and Fourth
Five year Plans for the whole country is outstanding. This
Programme designed at Comilla also had a considerable influence
an infrastructure building, an development and strengthening
of local government and an the improvement of the income of
the underemployed rural population. The outcome, the causes
and limitation of which cannot be dealt with in detail here.
was much greater in East Pakistan than in West Pakistan.
Another major aspect of development policy in East Pakistan
is the Thana Irrigation Project, also designed along the lines
suggested by the Comilla Academy. Especially the introduction
of Winter irrigation by the Academy caused much criticism
as it was considered odd to irrigate the usually flooded land.
But these critics forgot that because of the flood risks Winter
is the only season for safe cultivation, as soon as ,irrigation
made cultivation possible at all. The quick adoption of Winter
irrigation by the peasants endorsed the Academy's view.
Another important aspect of the Academy's work is gaining
ground in general policy even though the process is slower
in this case: to listen carefully to the rural population
and to involve the common man in the developmental process
is one of the important demands of Comilla. This is gaining
more and more ground in different settings like Thana Councils,
Union Councils, etc., as well as in the slow reorientation
process of making civil servants understand their job as that
of teachers and helpers of the people instead of thinking
of themselves as administrators. Under the notion "development
from below," it has its place in today's discussion of