Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 2
Leading activists have warned the BJP-led Centre against a NITI Aayog proposal to subsidise agricultural labour through MGNREGA funds. They have urged it to reject the attempt to provide the distressed sector support at the “cost of the objectives” of the flagship programme of the previous Congress-led UPA government.
A letter to Rural Development Minister Narendra Singh Tomar signed by 28 prominent persons—“activists and academics closely involved in the design, implementation and evaluation of the MGNREGA”— called the proposal “ill-conceived” and something that “could potentially do harm to MGNREGA itself”.
Aruna Roy of the Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sangathan (MKSS) said: “While none of us dispute the very pressing need to support the agricultural sector, we feel that the attempt to give it support at the cost of the objectives of MGNREGA must be rejected.
“The proposal is ill-conceived and could potentially do harm to MGNREGA itself. We hope that you will be in agreement with our reasons for opposing this proposal and urge the Ministry of Rural Development to clarify its position at the earliest and not introduce counterproductive measures like this which will compromise the legal mandate of the MGNREGA,” she said.
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