MGNREGA Running Out Of Funds
- According to its own financial statement, the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme has run out of funds halfway through the financial year, and supplementary budgetary allocations will not come to the rescue for at least another month when the next Parliamentary session begins.
- This means that payments for MGNREGA workers as well as material costs will be delayed, unless the States dip into their own funds.
- Activists say the Centre is condemning workers to “forced labour” by delaying wage payments at a time of economic distress.
- However, the Centre is now accusing many States of “artificially creating demand” for work on the ground.
- The MGNREGA is a demand driven scheme, guaranteeing 100 days of unskilled work to any rural household that wants it.
- During COVID-19 lockdown, the scheme was ultimately given its highest budget of ₹1.11 lakh crore and provided a critical lifeline for a record 11 crore workers.
Source : The Hindu