Berhampur: Odisha’s Ganjam district has topped the country in providing 100 days of work to rural households under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) during 2021-22, a senior official said.
As many as 1,29,290 households in the district were provided 100 days of employment in the 2021-22 fiscal, followed by Barmer (1,19,938) and Nagaur (1,12,903) in Rajasthan.
Over 4,00,000 migrant workers had returned to Ganjam when a national lockdown was imposed in 2020 to check the spread of coronavirus. Several workers stayed back when the workers returned to their workplaces, leading to an increase in demand for MGNREGS jobs, the official said.
The district in south Odisha has also generated 2,99,00,497 person-days of work under the rural employment scheme during the period, ranking fourth in the country.
Ganjam Collector Vijay Amruta Kulange thanked the team of the district rural development agency (DRDA) and block officials for achieving the first position in the country in providing 100 days of work under MGNREGA.
He also asked them to maintain the same spirit in 2022-23.
The jobs created under the MGNREGA have helped rural people to sustain their livelihood at the time of the pandemic, said Shinde Dattatraya Bhausaheb, project director, DRDA.
Various infrastructure projects like cow sheds, rural parks, rural tourist circuits, model ponds, model hatcheries, Biju Panchayat library, model Anganwadi centres, and gymnasiums, were taken up under the scheme, apart from the construction of roads, and drains, he said.
The project director said the Ganjam district has also achieved the top position among the total 30 districts of the state in MGNREGA expenditure.
The total expenditure incurred under the flagship rural jobs programme in the district was Rs 635 crore during 2021-22 fiscal, officials said.
MGNREGA is aimed at enhancing the livelihood security of households in rural areas of the country by providing at least 100 days of guaranteed wage employment in a financial year to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work.
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