The MGNREGS has become a major support for daily wage labourers in different villages during the coronavirus crisis, as central government figures show that the beneficiaries got 114 per cent more work in July than last year under the scheme.
And since May, this figure has been steadily increasing.
Under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) that provides employment to rural people and is operated by the Rural Development Ministry, the beneficiaries got 73 per cent more work in May compared with the corresponding period last year. The figure touched 92 per cent and 114 per cent during June and July respectively.
In fact, after the migration of migrant labourers from the metros during coronavirus outbreak, the government also laid special emphasis on MGNREGS to provide means of livelihood for them in their respective villages. The Centre had increased the wages under this scheme from Rs 182 to Rs 202 per day, apart from hiking its budget by Rs 40,000 crore.
The budgetary allocation for MNREGS in the 2020-21 fiscal was Rs 61,500 crore, but an additional Rs 40,000 crore was provided for in the economic package of Rs 20 lakh crore announced by the central government under the Atmanirbhar Bharat initiative.
According to the Ministry data, under MGNREGS, in July 2020, an average of 2.26 crore people got work in the country, which is 114 per cent more than the previous year, while an average of 1.05 crore people got daily work in the same month.
In June, an average of 3.35 crore people got daily work, which is 92 per cent more than the 1.74 crore recorded in June last year.
In May this year, an average of 2.51 crore people got daily work under MGNREGS, which is 73 per cent higher than 1.45 crore figure in June last year.
According to the data, under the MNREGS, people in 1.86 lakh panchayats got work till July 30. According to Rural Development Ministry figures, 9.24 crore beneficiaries got employment till July 30. Till July 29, Rs 50,780 crore had been released under this scheme.
According to the data, 157.89 crore man-days were created till July 30 in the current fiscal, as compared to 265.35 person days during the 2019-20 fiscal.
Under the MGNREGS, people willing to work in rural areas are guaranteed 100 days of employment per year.