MGNREGA Turns Lifesaver for Workers, 72% Fund Spent in First Four Months
On 27 February 2015, in the Lok Sabha, PM Modi mocked the Congress’ MGNREGA scheme, calling it ‘a memorial of Congress’s failure.’ But during the pandemic, the Modi government has taken maximum support of the same scheme to help the economically distressed workers. According to the latest data of the Union Rural Development Ministry, Centre has already spent 72% of this year’s MGNREGA budget in the first four months.
Rs 1 lakh 22 thousand 398.43 crore was allocated for MNREGA for the financial year 2020–21. The government has spent Rs 87 thousand 611.41 crore from the first quarter of this year i.e. April to June, whereas in the last three years, the government was spending only 39% of the total fund in the first quarter. Statistics show that the fund spent 29% of the total allocation in the first quarter of 2019–20, 39% in the first quarter of 2018–19 and 32% in the first quarter of 2017–18.
Statistics show that between 1 April and August 4, 5 crore 36 lakh families got work under MGNREGA in the first four months of the current financial year, whereas in FY 2019–20, 5 crore 48 lakh families got work in the whole year. Statistics show that from the year 2013–14, this much work could not be mobilised under MNREGA in the entire year which has been done in four months. The reason for this is the huge increase in unemployment due to the pandemic and increasing poverty.
The goal of the Central Government was that 280 crore 65 lakh days of work will be given to the people under MNREGA in the current financial year, but in the first four months, only 163 crore days have been given to the people, which is more than 58 percent of the total target. Presently, 100 days of employment is guaranteed per person under this scheme. During the pandemic, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has repeatedly demanded to extend the guaranteed working days to 200.