You need Rs 5 more than we do, NREGA workers tell Modi

Jharkhand NREGA workers protest low wages by returning Rs 5 to PM on May Day

GN Bureau | May 2, 2016


#Narendra Modi   #NREGA   #Jharkhand workers   #May Day  


Hundreds of workers in Manika block of Jharkhand’s Latehar district have sent Rs 5 to prime minister Narendra Modi, on Sunday. They were protesting against the measly increase of NREGA wages in Jharkhand this year – from Rs 162 per day to Rs 167 per day.

 
NREGA wages in Jharkhand were raised by just Rs 4 last year (from Rs 158 to 162), and another Rs 5 this year. To protest against this stinginess, workers marched through Manika, held a rally, and then hundreds of them sent Rs 5 to the prime minister with a letter.
 
Text of the letter
Dear prime minister,
 
This year your government has increased the wages of NREGA workers in Jharkhand by five rupees (from Rs 162 per day to Rs 167 per day). We feel very lucky, because in 17 states the increase was even less. It sounds like NREGA workers in Odisha are now considered very well-off because their wages have not increased at all.
 
Actually, we are very concerned. The government must be really short of money if it is unable to raise NREGA wages to the minimum wage, that too when one third of the rural population is affected by drought. (For your kind information, the minimum wage in Jharkhand is Rs 212 per day.)
 
We feel that you need the extra five rupees more than we do, since your government has so many expenses. To implement the recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission, you will have to spend an additional Rs 1 lakh crore at least on salaries and pensions of government employees. Defence expenditure is about Rs 2.5 lakh crore. You must also be spending a lot of money on tax concessions for big companies, aside from giving them cheap land and other resources.
 
Considering all this, we NREGA workers have made a collective decision to give up our extra wages for a day and return the extra five rupees to you. We hope that this will help you to keep your corporate friends and government employees happy.
 
Your faithful workers,
[followed by name, signature and job card number]
 

This action was initiated by Grameen Swaraj Mazdoor Sangh – a local organisation of rural workers,  local activists James Herenj and Ankita said in a press release. Among other activities, members of the Sangh are struggling to secure their rights under NREGA, including employment on demand and payment within 15 days, the press release stated. However, interest in NREGA work is waning in the area because of low wages. 
 

Comments

 

Other News

Reopening: Old guidelines extended to November

As the Covid-19 situation continues to improve in India, the ministry of home affairs (MHA) has decided to continue the Guidelines for Reopening, which have already done away with nearly all of Lockdown restrictions in areas outside the containment zones. The MHA issued an order Monday and e

India records lowest new cases in three months

After a scare in September with the number of daily fresh cases inching above 90,000, India seems to have gone down the peak, with several key parameters giving cause for relief just in time for the annual festive season. The new confirmed cases in the 24 hours to Tuesday morning have fallen below 36,500 (

India’s case fatality rate lowest since Janata curfew

The annual festive season has brought good news for India: the country’s case fatality ratio has gone down to touch 1.5 percent, and the number of deaths per day has dipped below 500 in the 24 hours to Monday morning – bringing the situation closer to the number before the lockdown was imposed

“Script is the real hero”

Basking in the success of the new web series, ‘Scam 1992: The Harshad  Mehta Story ’,on SonyLIV, the OTT platform from Sony stable where the lead actors are new faces, NP Singh, MD and CEO of Sony Pictures Networks, has said that the script is the new hero. He credited the s

India’s active cases below 10% of total cases for three days

India’s trend of steadily decreasing active cases continues unabated. The number of Active Cases has remained below 10% of the total cases for the last three days, suggesting only one in 10 cases is active Covid-19 patient. The active cases comprise merely 9.29% of the total positive c

Cabinet clears bonus for non-gazetted employees

The union cabinet chaired by prime minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday gave its approval to pay productivity linked bonus (PLB) for 2019-20 to 16.97 lakh non-gazetted employees of commercial establishments like Railways, Posts, Defence, EPFO, and ESIC, with a financial implication of Rs.2,791 crore.

India Police Virtual Summit and Awards 2020

Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter