Rs 17,409 crore disbursed since April 1 as wage arrears under MGNREGS, PMJDY

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Published: April 11, 2020 12:10 AM

In regular years, wages due for February and March are generally liquidated by around May-end or at the beginning of June. In 2019-20, there were around 5.5 crore active MGNREGS workers.

The pro-poor scheme would cost the exchequer around Rs 10,200 crore a month (Rs 30,600 crore for three months). The pro-poor scheme would cost the exchequer around Rs 10,200 crore a month (Rs 30,600 crore for three months).

The rural development ministry has disbursed Rs 17,409 crore since April 1 towards full payment of wage arrears under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Generation Scheme (MGNREGS) and ex-gratia payment to 20.4 crore women under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana (PMJDY).

A senior official in the rural development ministry said that Rs 7,209 crore wage arrears under MGNREGS has been disbursed to the workers’ accounts while Rs 10,200 crore has been credited into the accounts of the women Jan Dhan account holders.

“In view of the Covid-19 pandemic, in order to ensure liquidity in the hands of the MGNREGS workers, we have cleared all the wages due to them for their works in February and March. As of today, there is absolutely zero arrears under MGNREGS,” said the official.

In regular years, wages due for February and March are generally liquidated by around May-end or at the beginning of June. In 2019-20, there were around 5.5 crore active MGNREGS workers.

Aimed at providing relief to the poor households, the finance minister had on March 26 increased the per-day national average of MGNREGS wages by Rs 20 to Rs 202 with effect from April 1. The finance minister had also said that under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Yojana package, all women PMJDY account holders would be given a monthly ex-gratia payment of Rs 500 for three months starting from April.

The pro-poor scheme would cost the exchequer around Rs 10,200 crore a month (Rs 30,600 crore for three months). The PMJDY accounts are with various public and private sector banks and regional rural banks.

“We have also credited ex-gratia for April to 100% Jan Dhan accounts,” the official said.

Secretary in the ministry of rural development, Rajesh Bhushan, had earlier directed banks to immediately credit the ex-gratia payment into the accounts of the intended beneficiaries immediately on receipt.

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