Allowance on way for no job in NREGA

Shah will will submit the report to Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh.

Written by Priyadarshi Siddhanta | New Delhi | Published: February 22, 2012 2:07 am

The government may soon have to shell out an Unemployment Allowance if it fails to provide jobs to wage seekers under the flagship Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).

“The MGNREGA software will automatically generate the pay order for payment of unemployment allowance to the wage seekers,whose demand for work is not met within 15 days,” said a report of a high-level committee chaired by Plan panel member Mihir Shah.

Shah will will submit the report to Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday. The committee has asked the Centre to deploy a dedicated official in each block to ensure effective execution of the works without relying on block development officers who hold “additional charge.”

It has also said that Gram Panchayats (GPs) should be bound to accept applications from job seekers and issue valid receipts. “Refusal to accept applications and provide dated receipts will be treated as a contravention under Section 25 of the Act.”

To prevent unsuspecting rural job seekers from being cheated,the panel has also called for online registration by job-seekers as well also through mobile phones.

For those using hand phones,the system must be made convenient to illiterate workers and it should include an Interactive Voice Response System that automatically issues dated receipts,the committee said. It also called for advance preparation of Labour Budgets by the states along with a shelf of projects reflecting the anticipated demand for work.

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