Karnataka Govt gives no guarantee on employment

The State is among the dregs in MGNREGS

Karnataka Govt gives no guarantee on  employment

A recent report by the Centre on the progress of national rural employment guarantee scheme in the country has found that barring conflict-ridden Jammu & Kashmir, Karnataka has been ranked last among all major states in the implementation of the programmes.

Even in absolute terms, tiny states like Tripura have generated more MGNREGS work than Karnataka, points out the report prepared by the Union Ministry of Rural Development.

Only 11 per cent of the budgeted households have received work under the scheme in the State. Out of 40 lakh households budgeted to receive the work, only 4.5 lakh have been engaged in work so far.

The corresponding figures for neighbouring Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu are 94, 89 and 105 per cent.

A more depressing picture emerges when the metric of total mandays of work provided is considered. A target of only five per cent of the budgeted mandays has been achieved till October this year. The corresponding figures for Andhra, Kerala, and Tamil Nadu are 60, 30 and 74 per cent.

Tripura shines

More surprising, other much smaller states have achieved more work under MGNREGS than Karnataka has. Tripura, with a population one-fifteenth of Karnataka, has generated more work than Karnataka. Tripura has generated 210 lakh mandays, while Karnataka has generated only 140 lakh mandays of work.

S R Hiremath, state adviser to Food commissioners appointed by the Supreme Court, said: “It is no secret that Karnataka is one of the worst-performing state when it comes to MGNREGS. The government has shown no sensitivity in implementing the scheme.”

Besides government apathy, Hiremath has also cited rampant corruption as one of the impediments to the implementation of employment guarantee scheme.

“Recently corruption was detected at Harapanahalli where bogus records were created. Moreover, work was undertaken using machines instead of manual labour under the scheme. That is not allowed under MGNREGS,” he added.

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