Here’s what a MNREGA for unemployed people in cities may look like

Jan 30, 2021

By: Navdeep Yadav

​The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act

Guarantees at least 100 days of work in a year for unskilled workers in rural parts.

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​As the pandemic took away thousands of jobs in cities..

...experts want a similar scheme for those unemployed in cities too

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​Aditi Nayar, economist at ICRA, a ratings agency

No matter how much the topic has been debated, MNREGA has helped the rural population find jobs.

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​Nayar suggested a similar model for urban India

The govt can support the unemployed with urban service provisions, rather than paying blank checks, she said.

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​Mahesh Vyas CEO of Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy believes...

In urban India, we have extremely poor public services, and govt can use this opportunity to “fix” that.

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​Vyas suggested that urban employment guarantee can focus on these…

“Let’s have enough people in security, judiciary, education, health and other infrastructure related fields.”

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​Ashwajit Singh MD at IPE Global said the government should create an urban equivalent of MNREGA

“(which) has the potential to create jobs and, provide social security to a large section of the population.”

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While the economic recovery started post lockdown, the unemployment is still far from pre-COVID level.

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According to CMIE, urban unemployment in December went up to 8.84 percent from 7.07 percent in November.

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Even the number of employed people saw a sharp fall of 4.8 million in December to 388.8 million.

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