In news– Recently, the Ministry of Rural Development has notified fresh wage rates under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) for financial year 2022-23.
- As per the revised wages 21 out of 34 states and Union Territories are getting less than 5 percent increase and 10 states getting more than 5 per cent hike.
- There is no change in the wage rates of three states – Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura.
- The maximum 7.14 per cent has been recorded in Goa, from Rs 294 per day in 2021-22 to Rs 315 per day in 2022-23.
- The lowest increase of 1.77 per cent is in Meghalaya where the new wage rate has been fixed at Rs 230 per day from the existing Rs 226 per day.
- According to the new wage rates, five states and UTs with the highest NREGS wages are Haryana (Rs 331 per day); Goa (315); Kerala (311); Karnataka (309); and Andaman & Nicobar Islands (308).
- Five states with lowest NREGS wages are Tripura (212); Bihar (210); Jharkhand (210); Chhattisgarh (204); and Madhya Pradesh (204).
How are wages revised?
- Wage rates for workers under the MGNREGA are notified and revised by the Central Government in accordance with the provisions of Section 6(1) of the MGNREGA, 2005.
- The Union government fixes state-wise wage rates according to changes in the CPI-AL (Consumer Price Index-Agriculture Labour), which reflects the increase in the inflation in rural areas.
- The revised wage rates are made applicable from 1st April of the year.
- MGNREGA wages are paid based on measurement of work done i.e. piece rate basis.
- The actual wage payable is calculated based on the output of the worker.
- Every State has its defined Schedule of Rates on the basis of which the work output is defined and used to calculate the wages for MGNREGA beneficiaries.
- It is an employment scheme to enhance livelihood security in rural areas by providing at least 100 days of guaranteed demand based wage employment in a financial year to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.
- MGNREGA scheme was launched in February 2006.
- Ministry: Ministry of Rural development.
- Beneficiaries are willing rural population, unskilled manual labourers and seasonally unemployed.
- A 60:40 wage and material ratio has to be maintained.
- No contractors and machinery is allowed.
- The central government bears the 100% wage cost of unskilled manual labour and 75% of the material cost including the wages of skilled and semi-skilled workers.
- If work is not provided within 15 days of applying, applicants are entitled to an unemployment allowance.
- MGNREGA is to be implemented mainly by gram panchayats.
- At least one-third beneficiaries shall be women.
- Social audit has to be done by the gram sabha at least once in every 6 months.