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Jharkhand govt to launch MGNREGA like scheme for urban poor

The scheme will be known as Mukhyamantri SHRAMIK (Shahri Rozgar Manjuri For Kamgar) and will aim at enhancing livelihood security for the urban poor.

Jun 22, 2020 17:39 IST
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The Urban Development and Housing Department on June 21 announced that the Jharkhand government is all set to launch an employment guarantee scheme for the urban unskilled workers. The scheme will be on similar lines of Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).

The scheme is the brainchild of state Chief Minister, Hemant Soren, and will be known as Mukhyamantri SHRAMIK (Shahri Rozgar Manjuri For Kamgar). The scheme aims at enhancing livelihood security for the urban poor.

After Kerala Jharkhand will be a second state in the country to launch an employment guarantee scheme for the urban poor. Kerala government runs Ayyankali Urban Employment Guarantee Scheme (AUEGS) for guaranteed employment.

What the new scheme entails?

The scheme will ensure the 100 days of paid work for unskilled labour in urban areas. It will also provide an unemployment allowance to those who will not get work under the scheme within 15 days.

The unemployment allowance given to the workers will be one-fourth of the basic pay in the first 30 days. Workers will be able to get half of the basic pay in the second month of unemployment and full basic pay if they will not be able to get work even in the third month.

Under the scheme, the workers will be given work under urban local bodies. They could also be employed for laying telephone lines and pipelines as well as cleanliness workers.

Jharkhand State government on the scheme:

Vinay Kumar Choubey, State Urban Development Secretary stated that the scheme has been formulated and we have been waiting for the cabinet’s approval. He further added that the scheme can be rolled out in a couple of months.

The total budget of the scheme is yet to be finalized and the state government officials have also not given any more information on that. The state government has also been working on software for the scheme with the help of National Informatics Centre (NIC). The workers registered for the scheme will also get job cards like the ones in MGNREGA.

Scheme helpful for the returning workers amid lockdown:

Harishwar Dayal, an Economist mentioned that the scheme will be helpful in providing employment to the migrant workers who have been returning Jharkhand during the lockdown. He stated that it is a well-meaning initiative and the poor in the urban areas also need an employment guarantee and this new scheme will be of great help.

As per the state government, more than five lakh migrants who have been working in the metro cities have returned to Jharkhand since the lockdown was imposed. Most of the workers have been jobless in Jharkhand and have been waiting to return to work once the lockdown is eased.

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