Demand for the work under the MGNREGA has been more than doubled in this fiscal, so far, because of the COVID-19 lockdown and about of 42 per cent of the total allocation of around Rs 1.01 lakh crore for the employment scheme has already been distributed among all the states, as the sources told on Tuesday.
The way demand for the work under the Mahatma Gandhi National Employment Guarantee Act (i.e. MGNREGA) has been “sharply” increased this year, as it seems a sizeable amount will be required to meet demand, as they told.
To give the relief to migrant workers who returned to their villages that from across the country that during the lockdown, as the Centre has been expanded the ambit work offered under the scheme as well. It now includes toilet construction and also dragon fruit plantation, as the sources in the government told.
They said only the labor cost for construction of toilets, part of the Swachh Bharat Mission, will be paid under the MGNREGA.
Besides this, dragon fruit plantation, that is mostly done in northeastern states, that has also been included in the list of works, as the sources told.
The Officials in the Rural Development Ministry said the ambit of work has been expanded to give as much as opportunities as possible to engage the migrant workers that who have returned to their native states as well.
Sources in the ministry also suggested that additional funds might be required for the MGNREGA as the demand for the work under it has more than doubled compared to last year.
Out of the around Rs 1.01 lakh crore total allocation for the employment guarantee scheme, which also includes the around Rs 40,000 crore allocated under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana, around Rs 43,000 crore has already been allocated to states, as they told as well.
If the existing rate of the rising that in demand for work remains, a substantial amount would be required for the implementation of the MGNREGA in the existing financial year, as sources told as well.