Khonoma, Nagaland Considered to be India’s first green village, Khonama was once a hub of resistance against the British. The residents follow an eco-friendly version of farming called Jhum agriculture, which is known to enrich the soil from within.

Jamola, Jammu & Kashmir Nestled among glaciers in the Rajouri district of Jammu and Kashmir, Jamola struggled with water shortage for decades. Presently, the village has water harvesting tanks, check dams, rainwater harvesting structures, and water bodies like bowlies (natural springs).

Piplantri, Rajasthan As a step towards saving the girl child and improving the forest cover, this village follows a unique tradition. Every time a girl is born in this village, the villagers plant a total of 111 trees in her honour and nurture them in her name.

Punsari, Gujarat The village competes with any city with its anganwadi centres with advanced infrastructure, air-conditioned schools, biometric machines, WiFi, litter-free and clean roads, closed-circuit cameras, biogas plants, and water-purifying plants.

Odanthurai, Tamil Nadu The village is one of the greatest examples of self-sustainability. Not only does this village generate electricity for its use, but it also sells power to the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board. It also has numerous other projects such as wind and solar farms.

Baghuwar, Madhya Pradesh Baghuwar village has functioned without a sarpanch since independence. Instead, there are community leaders who take charge in different sectors to improve the village. Today, the village has exemplary sanitation infrastructure, underground sewage lines and a substantial number of biogas plants.

Hiware Bazar, Maharashtra The village once suffered from draughts and extreme water shortage. To tackle it, they switched to horticulture from water-intensive farming, and now have 300 open wells brimming with water. The village also boasts of 60 millionaires and has the highest per capita income in the country!

Lana Bhalta, Himachal Pradesh Almost 50 km away from Shimla, Lana Bhalta displays a great example of waste management. The villagers use a unique method to transform plastic waste into bricks, bases, and interlocking tiles.

Kokkarebellur, Karnataka Home to India’s rarest species of birds, the painted storks, the villagers here have taken ownership of protecting these birds as family, and have also created designated spaces for wounded birds to rest.

Buchakewadi, Maharashtra Located in the western ghats, the village receives heavy rains, and the residents have found a unique way to use this to their advantage. As a solution to land leaching, they built terraces on the mountain slopes to stem the flow of water and keep the topsoil intact.

Chizami, Nagaland From environmental conservation to socio-economic reforms, the village has set many examples of peak transformations. The village used the Chizami model of development that empowered marginalised women from the Naga society to be the changemakers.

Anchatgeri, Karnataka Located in the Dharwad district of Karnataka, Anchatgeri boasts a seamless WiFi network, CCTV cameras on the main street, a local school, and a panchayat office. There are even solar panels on the roof of every other house.

Gangadevipalli, Andhra Pradesh A small village in the Warangal district, Gangadevipalli is yet another example of self-reliance. With constant electricity and water supply, a community-owned cable TV service, well-lit roads, and a centralised water filtration plant, this village is a model for other developing villages.

Kumbalangi, Kerala India’s first model tourism village, this tiny island in Kochi boasts a blend of rich aquatic life and cultural heritage, frequently visited by tourists. This has been a great source of income for the villagers.

Sui, Haryana Under the Swa-Perit Adarsh Gram Yojana, the village of Sui now has better roads, a water treatment plant, government schools, parks, lakes, libraries, auditoriums and other amenities traditionally associated with urban areas.

Ramchandrapuram, Telangana The first village in Telangana to win Nirmal Puraskar in 2004-05 for achieving 100% sanitation, it is famous for its commitment to the visually impaired. A village full of eye donors, the community had collectively pledged to donate their eyes to the visually challenged.

Mawlynnong, Meghalaya Nestled in the picturesque mountains of Meghalaya, the place is characterised by clean roads and dustbins installed in most places. Thanks to all the residents of the village, it is now considered to be the cleanest village in India and Asia.

Ransih Kalan, Punjab Located in the Nihal Singh Wala subdivision of Moga, Punjab, the village created a unique welfare model for its citizens under which all its residents, especially the underprivileged, get health insurance and pensions for senior citizens, widows and persons with disabilities.

Bancha, Madhya Pradesh The first Indian village to completely embrace solar-powered stoves, the village once used  1,000 kg of wood per day as firewood. Presently, it has zero wooden stoves and almost negligible use of LPG cylinders in all its 75 households.

Dobisha, West Bengal In the past, this village lacked electricity, but now all 50 households have adopted solar energy. Solar power is utilised to operate irrigation pumps, computers in the community learning centre, street lights, and the clean drinking water ATM.