Sanction unemployment allowance for MGNREGA workers: Odisha CMPTI | Bhubaneswar | Updated: 29-03-2020 21:09 IST | Created: 29-03-2020 21:09 IST
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday sought Prime Minister Narendra Modis intervention for sanction of unemployment allowance amounting to over Rs 380 crore to MGNREGA workers of the state for the 21-day lockdown imposed in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. In a letter to Modi, the chief minister said while taking measures against COVID-19, it is also necessary to minimise the suffering of the people.
While we are taking all preemptive steps as a nation to minimise the damage due to COVID 19, a global pandemic, we must also see that the suffering of the people, particularly those at the bottom of the pyramid is minimised, Patnaik said. Stating that the people of Odisha have positively responded to the call of the prime minister during the 'Janata Curfew' and the lockdown, he said the state government also took many proactive steps to ensure the safety and security of the people.
While we continue our fight with the impending challenge, I would like to bring to your notice that the poor people, particularly MGNREGA workers, have been badly affected due to the 21 days lockdown, Patnaik said in his letter, copy of which was released to the media. In Odisha, there are 36,10,797 active workers during the current year who are deprived of getting work under MGNREGA due to 21 days lockdown, he said.
To protect their livelihood, an amount of Rs 380.39 crore, which is one-fourth of the wage rate as per the MGNREG Act may be sanctioned as unemployment allowance that will certainly help them to mitigate their sufferings during this lockdown period, as we are not in a position to give them work, the chief minister said. I would, therefore, request you to kindly consider the above proposal and allow the state to use the MGNREGA fund and release the unemployment allowance to the account of the MGNREGA workers of Odisha, Patnaik added.