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MGNREGA: Activists threaten agitation against Raje’s proposal

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje’s proposal to change the UPA government’s flagship Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) from an act to a scheme has invited criticism from civil society groups.

india Updated: Jul 06, 2014 00:34 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Vasundhara Raje,MGNREGA change,Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act

Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje’s proposal to change the UPA government’s flagship Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) from an act to a scheme has invited criticism from civil society groups. They have threatened mass agitation if the NDA government implements Raje’s proposal.

Member of the Rajasthan Employment Guarantee Council and co-convener of the Soochna Evam Rozgar Abhiyan, Nikhil Dey questioned the motives behind Raje’s move.

“MGNREGA gives a legal right to labourers (to demand and get work) and makes the state accountable. If the NREGA is reduced to a scheme, then there would be no accountability of the state towards the labourers,” he said in a press conference in Jaipur on Friday.

He said that if the government shies away from its responsibility to provide work to the 50 lakh active job-card holders, then people will have to agitate to get their right.

The Medha Patkar-led National Alliance for People’s Movement (NAPM) also have opposed the purported move.

"If there is any attempt by the government to change the act into a scheme we will launch a nationwide agitation," they said in a press statement.

The Congress too criticized Raje’s proposal saying it would be punishment for the poor.

"We should try to strengthen and re-assess the scheme, but scrapping off a scheme like NREGA will be against national interest," said Shakeel Ahmad, Cong leader.

First Published: Jul 06, 2014 00:20 IST