Amid demand surge, 1.4 lakh families have reached annual MGNREGA work limit -Priscilla Jebaraj

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published Published on Jul 6, 2020   modified Modified on Jul 7, 2020

-The Hindu

Activists demand doubling of 100 days per household limit

At least 1.4 lakh poor rural households have already completed their quota of 100 days of work under MGNREGA in the first three months of the year, and will not be eligible for further benefits under the rural employment guarantee scheme for the rest of the year. Another seven lakh households have completed 80 days and are on the verge of running out of work as well, according to the scheme’s database.

With COVID-19 pandemic and the lockdown resulting in thousands of unemployed migrant workers returning to their villages and now dependent on MGNREGA wages, activists are urging the government to increase the limit to at least 200 days per household.

“This is an unprecedented situation where many people are clearly desperate for work and dependent on MGNREGA wages. In many areas, monsoon is the hungry season. If you stop providing work at this time on the grounds that the 100-day limit has been crossed, it will be a huge crisis for these families,” said Nikhil Dey, a Rajasthan-based activist with the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan.

The MGNREGA scheme contains a provision for districts affected by drought or other natural disaster to request an expansion of the scheme to allow for 150 days of work per household. Given that COVID-19 was declared a national disaster, activists have demanded that this provision be implemented immediately across the country.

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The Hindu, 6 July, 2020, https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/amid-demand-surge-14-lakh-families-have-reached-annual-mgnrega-work-limit/article32006305.ece?homepage=true


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