ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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MGNREGA Works and Their Impacts

This study reports on a survey of 4,881 users of more than 4,100 works created under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act in Maharashtra. It provides evidence that MGNREGA works support agriculture, and benefit a large number of small and marginal farmers. An overwhelming 90% of the respondents considered the works very useful or somewhat useful, while only 8% felt they were useless. Further, most works continue to be maintained and are in a good condition. Overall, this study suggests that the widespread perception that the MGNREGA does not create anything productive appears to be misplaced, although there is scope for improving the choice of works, their design, and their execution.

Women Participation and Rationing in the Employment Guarantee Scheme

The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act that guarantees employment of every rural household for 100 days has different progressive provisions to incentivise participation of women in the programme. Official data suggest that 47% of all MGNREGA workers are women. The extent to which the programme is inclusive of women, with a particular focus on sub-populations of women such as widows and mothers of young children who typically face serious constraints in the context of labour market participation, is examined in this study using data from the National Sample Survey. The study finds that while the MGNREGA has indeed been inclusive of women, the substantial variations both across states and the exclusion of vulnerable groups of women demand attention.
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