Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today announced a hike in wages to be provided under the rural employment guarantee scheme to offset the effects of inflation.
"We have decided to hike the wages as per the rise in consumer price index. This will raise the wages by 17 to 30 per cent," Manmohan Singh said at a function to mark the fifth anniversary of the Mahamta Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA).
To further give fillip to income of the MGNREGA workers wage rates have been revised. The notification has linked MGNREGA wage rates to CPI-AL with a corresponding annual increase. The notified wage rates have led to enhancement of wage rates by 17-30 per cent.
The function also witnessed demonstration of bio-metric ICT-enabled MGNREGA process to ensure transparency and accountability in payment of wages to the right person in time.
The prime minister said the minimum wages under the scheme has already gone up from Rs65 per worker at its start in 2006 to Rs100 now, "which itself is a big rise."
Speaking on the occasion, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi said it was time for introspection on the shortfalls of the scheme and move forward in new direction.
"The scheme has been a big success in creating employment for rural people, especially those belonging to weaker sections and women," she said. "However, there have been complaints of irregularities and corruption too."
"It is an occasion to analyse the shortcomings in the implementation of the scheme, plan new directions and move forward," she said.