Government orders study on rural job scheme | SupportBiz

Managing Growth

Government orders study on rural job scheme

The Indian government plans to undertake a ‘concurrent evaluation study’ of its national rural job guarantee scheme – the MGNREG. The Ministry of Rural Development is looking to appoint an agency to study the scheme.

Research bodies can submit their expression of interest (EoI) on or before January 21, 2013.

'The (study) entire exercise has to be completed ‘within a period of nine months from the date of release of the first installment of the fee,’ according to an advertisement on the ministry’s website.

Industry at large has come down hard on the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee scheme for the fact that it tempts blue-collared workers to quit their factory jobs and move to the villages.

A number of businessmen and industry body presidents interviewed by SupportBiz over the past one year have blamed the rural job scheme – where workers are paid a daily wage to dig ponds and construct roads in the hinterland for instance – for shortages in industrial workforce.

India allocated Rs. 1,41,015 crore for the jobs scheme for the five years beginning 2007, and spent a whopping Rs. 1,57,693 crore on the same, according to government data.

‘Despite huge expenditure and far reaching consequences of such an intervention in rural sector (specifically rural as well as urban labour market), and passage of six years, there are far and few empirical research studies to justify the existence of such an important programme. And there is complete absence of evaluation study that covers comprehensively the important aspects of the Act and its implementation. Thus it is proposed to organize a nationwide concurrent evaluation study of MGNREGA,’ the advertisement said.

An organization, institution, or an agency, with a minimum of five years of experience in conducting large scale research studies in the social sector / the sciences, can send in its application to the Department of Rural Development, the advertisement said.

You can find the Ministry of Rural Development’s advertisement here