Govt favours reforms for implementing MGNREGA



New Delhi: Identifying major challenges in implementation of rural employment guarantee scheme, government Thursday came out with a set of reforms that include payment of unemployment allowance if a legally entitled worker is not given the promised job on time.

The reform note brought out by the Rural Development Ministry include solutions to reducing delay in payments to workers, providing requisite number of days of work as per demand, improving quality of assets created under MGNREGA and their relevance to the livelihood of the poor and ensuring full wages stipulated under the programme.

Noting that MGNREGA promises that "if you are not provided work within 15 days of your applying for work, you will be provided unemployment allowance," the reform note says that in case the states "fail to provide work within 15 days", workers who applied for work "must be paid unemployment allowance".

The note that summarises nine major challenges and solutions to MGNREGA implementation and placed in public domain to get comments also recommends regular flow of funds, strengthened grievance redressal mechanisms and steps to reduce workers' migration to urban areas.

In a foreword note, Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh said "these reform measures do not involve any legislative amendment and can be put into effect through executive action by the Centre and the states".

"To begin with, these reforms could be implemented in 2000 of the poorest blocks of the country, especially those with high concentration of SC/ST population," the Minister said.

PTI