No Money To Pay For MNREGA Workers

Story Highlights
  • MNREGA scheme has run out of funds halfway through the financial year.
  • MNREGA scheme shows a negative net balance of Rs 8,686 crores.
  • This negative balance is highest in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh; Rs 139.3 crore and 137 crore respectively.

The centre’s flagship rural employment scheme, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) scheme has run out of funds halfway through the financial year. moreover, the supplementary budgetary allocations will not come to rescue for at least when the next Parliamentary session begins.

According to the latest financial statement, the MNREGA scheme shows a negative net balance of Rs 8,686 crores. This means that payments for MNREGA workers and the material cost shall be delayed uncles States step in with their own funds. Some activists say that the Central government is condemning workers to ‘forced labour’ by delaying wage payments.

Sources reveal that as many as 21 out of 35 Indian states/Union territories have utilized over 100 per cent of their allocated funds till October 29 of FY22. With this the total expenditure including the payments due is estimated to be Rs. 79,810 crore. This negative balance is highest in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh; Rs 139.3 crore and 137 crore respectively. Followed by Himachal Pradesh where the negative balance is accumulating to be 135.2 crores.

The scheme was introduced in 2005 as a social measure to ensure ‘the right to work’. Under this scheme, the local government will have to legally provide at least 100 days of wage employment in rural India to enhance the quality of life of workers.

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