Swapan Dasgupta in The Sunday Times of India:
“There is pressure on the government to widen the scope of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, now operational in 330 districts, nationally. Last year, the NREG Programme devoured Rs 12,000 crore of taxpayers’ money; this year, its drum-beaters want double that amount….
“The NREGA deems that 60% of any approved project must comprise labour costs. The other 40% can include material and skilled labour. A draft report by the Comptroller and Auditor General reveals that only 3.2% of the registered households could avail of 100 days ‘guaranteed’ work. The average employment under NREGP was just 18 days. Rahul Gandhi says that only five per cent of the money reaches the beneficiaries.
“A report on the NREGA website says that in the six chosen districts of Karnataka only 13 households were provided 50 mandays employment in seven months. This ‘achievement’ cost Rs 1.47 crore in wages, Rs 1.65 crore on material and Rs 2.84 crore on ‘contingencies’!”
Read the full article: Flawed job scheme: right and wrong