Drought-hit states to get benefited by NREGA as government sets a June deadline
To make sure that monsoon rainfall is used for water harvesting under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (
Officials aware of the matter told ET that the funds allocated to the flagship rural jobs programme will be prioritised so that drought-hit states can be benefited.
Even though drought management is the responsibility of state government, the Supreme Court has said that the Central government's responsibility can not end just with providing funds.
"We want to cover as much ground as possible before the monsoon season starts...This year, we are being very prompt with our payments from the beginning of the year to encourage states to take up more work," a senior government official told ET on the condition of anonymity.
Unlike last two years that faced bad monsoons, the weather department has predicted that this year the monsoon rainfall would be normal.
"Can I use the remainder of the time from April to June to use NREGA funds in driving a campaign for water conservation? Through desilting, creation of farm ponds, cleaning up canals, I can use all the available resources towards water conservation so that we can survive even if we do not get adequate rains," PM Modi had said yesterday while addressing Civil Servants at a meeting in Mumbai.
To ensure better relief, the Centre has asked states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and Rajasthan to increase the pace of their rural development plan and take up more works under NREGA.
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