Despite widespread violations of workers’ entitlements, the BJP government as well as the opposition have shown nothing but apathy.
Low budget, poor pay, delays in payment are being used as tools to lower the interest of people in the scheme, say activists.
“Today, women account for 56% of the MGNREGA workers. Unlike minimum wages, under MGNREGA, equal wages are paid to both men and women.”
The report saying that there was “no compelling reason to align MGNREGA and states’ minimum wages again”. Wages paid under the Act were last adjusted to meet minimum pay in 2009.
Union minister of state for home affairs Hansraj G. Ahir said that setting up cow sanctuaries at the district level can help prevent incidents of cow slaughter and violence related to cow vigilantism.
With the help of development workers from a non-profit, Barkheda’s villagers are using the commons for the mutual benefit of the community at large.
A combined effort by both the Centre and the states is necessary to implement Acts, especially welfare schemes like the Food Security Act, to ensure people have a better quality of life.
While some people allege they have been excluded from the MGNREGA system altogether because their Aadhaar cards weren’t linked, others say wages are going into wrong accounts because of incorrect seeding.
In 2011, the minimum daily wage and the MGNREGA wage in Bihar was Rs 120, today the minimum daily wage has increased to Rs 232 per day but the MGREGA wage is Rs 168.
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Despite a committee recommending a new method of wage calculation, the Narendra Modi government has failed to increase salaries under the MGNREGA in real terms.
The Centre has put in place regulations that systematically calculate less than the payable compensation
Most technocratic interventions introduced in MGNREGA appear to be designed to aid administrators rather than for actually helping workers.
As the next hearing in the matter of Swaraj Abhiyan vs Union of India approaches, activists are trying to raise awareness on the deep-rooted problems in MGNREGA implementation.
Of this, 63.3% is for MGNREGA project materials, 34.6% for wage payments to labourers and the remaining for administrative costs.
By making “insidious” changes to the system, the rural development ministry is trying to curb workers’ rights, says People’s Action for Employment Guarantee.
In Gujarat’s Chhota Udaipur, MNREGA has helped villagers increase their earnings, improved connectivity in the area and led to higher farm yields.
While most policy discourse tends to argue for an increase in healthcare spending to improve overall services, little attention is paid to the quality of healthcare facilities.
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Providing a UBI in place of existing schemes will not change the fundamentally unequal income distribution in the country. The way to resolve the crisis is a redistribution from the rich to the poor.
There is no evidence to show that introducing Aadhaar identification into the employment guarantee Act will reduce corruption, while chances are it will increase the struggles of vulnerable citizens.
Notifications for the MGNREGA and EPS programmes show the effect of new UIDAI regulations and how mandatory requirements are carefully couched so as to not openly violate the Supreme Court’s order.
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The Centre’s off-record instructions through WhatsApp and a squeeze on funds made the rural work programme crash after a roaring first half of the year.
The rural development ministry unofficially informed states that no more funds will be released and existing funds will have to be used pragmatically.
Civil society bodies say the state has exaggerated data on the scheme, which suffers from large-scale delays in wage payments.
Economist and professor at the University of California, Berkeley Pranab Bardhan spoke to The Wire about global discontent amongst the working class, the Modi government’s policies, the need for employment generation, the controversy around Raghuram Rajan and more.
Renown economist JosephStiglitz specifically called out the government’s crackdown on NGOs as well as their reaction to the February 9 incident at JNU.
Centre and state governments have not followed through on providing food grains, mid-day meals, loans or MGNREGA payments.
Drought-hit villagers in Bundelkhand are not receiving the kind of employment and rations they desperately need.
As a society, we should be ashamed that year after year, farmers beg for a decent livelihood and are forced to take their lives.
“We hope that the honourable Supreme Court’s MGNREGA order will be duly obeyed and will result in immediate and appropriate action,” the activists said.
The Supreme Court’s order on compensation to silicosis victims is a relief to workers and their families who have had a long wait for justice.
The Modi government’s ideal for India is built at the cost of our collective conscience, furthering oppressing the already marginalised.
A safety net for rural areas, MGNREGA guarantees 100 days of paid, unskilled manual work every year to every rural household.
“We wish to convey our deep collective anxiety about the enormous suffering of the rural poor in large parts of India’s countryside as they are battling drought, often for the second or even third consecutive year,” the letter said.
A guarantee for employment presupposes that the money to be paid for the work provided is also guaranteed.
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