Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)
Part of: Prelims and GS II – Policies and interventions
Context According to its own financial statement, the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme shows a negative net balance of Rs. 8,686 crore.
- The Centre’s flagship rural employment 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.
- The scheme’s 2021-22 budget was set at just Rs. 73,000 crore.
- The Central government argued that the nationwide lockdown was over, and that supplementary budgetary allocations would be available if the money ran out.
- However, as on October 29, the total expenditure, including payments due had already reached Rs. 79,810 crore.
- 21 States show a negative net balance, with Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal faring the worst.
What is Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA)?
- Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) was notified in 2005.
- Goal – To improve the livelihood security of people in rural areas.
- It is a universal scheme guaranteeing 100 days of wage employment in a year to every rural household that expresses a demand.
- It aims to guarantee the ‘Right to Work’.
- Every registered household receives a Job Card (JC) to track their work completed.
- The scheme is implemented by the gram panchayat.
- The failure of provision for employment within 15 days of the receipt of a job application will result in the payment of unemployment allowance to the job seekers.
- Employment is to be provided within 5 km of an applicant’s residence
- Employment under MGNREGA is a legal entitlement