The Narendra Modi government generated 813.76 crore person days of work under its flagship schemes in the last three years, Union minister Narendra Singh Tomar today said. He said the expenditure on rural development increased from Rs 58,630 crore in 2013-14 to Rs 95,099 crore in 2016-17, a whopping 62 per cent increase, as improving the quality of life of the people in rural areas tops the Modi government’s agenda. The Union rural development minister said the government enchanced the expenditure to make gram panchayats poverty free. The Rural Development Ministry aims to increase it to Rs 1,05,448 crore for 2017-18, he said.
“The ministry generated 813.76 crore person days of work in the last three years through various flagship schemes,” Tomar told reporters here. A person day is the amount of work done by one person in one working day. The maximum 636.78 crore person days of work was generated under MNREGA, followed by 98.97 crore under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana and 78.01 crore under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, he said.
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Tomar said the government is also enabling rural households to access self-employment opportunities. Under the Deen Dayal Upadhyay-Grameen Kaushal Yojana in 2015-16, around 1,35,000 candidates got jobs. Speaking on the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, Tomar said rural sanitation coverage has gone up from 42.01 per cent in October 2014 to 63.97 per cent in May 2017. As many as 1.95 lakh villages, 137 districts and three states have been declared open defecation free (ODF) as on May 2017, he said, adding the government is aiming to make 300 districts ODF by the end of the year.
During 2016-17, more than 1.23 crore assets created under MGNREGA were geo-tagged and placed in the public domain and about 96 per cent of wage payments were electronically credited into the accounts of the workers. On the PMAY, he said that in line with the government’s objective of “Housing for All” by 2022, it intends to provide houses to 1 crore poor people by 2019 in rural areas. The pace of construction of roads under the PMGSY has increased to a record 130 kms per day, the highest average annual construction rate in the last seven years.