Chandigarh: Amid the coronavirus lockdown, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has sought financial assistance from the Central government to clear all pending liabilities under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme.
In a letter to Union Minister of Rural Development and Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Narendra Singh Tomar, Captain Amarinder Singh raised the issue of pending wage liabilities of MGNREGA workers in Punjab and said that they will not be able to sustain their families during the pan-India lockdown without their daily wages and lack of fresh employment opportunities. “Captain Amarinder Singh apprised the Union Minister that as on March 24, 2020, wage liabilities of Rs 84 crore were pending for approximately 1.30 lakh workers in the state,” an official statement said on Thursday.
Singh said that the release of funds would also help the state handle the present difficult situation to some extent.
“Expressing concern over the precarious situation, the Chief Minister urged the Union Minister to immediately release the pending wage liabilities without any further delay, to provide the much-needed relief to the beneficiaries for the subsistence of their families,” the statement said.
“As on March 24, 2020, the state has generated 230 lakh person-days, with an additional liability of Rs 120 crore pending against payment for materials. He underlined the need for release of sufficient funds to meet all these liabilities at the earliest,” it added.
News media is in a crisis & only you can fix it
You are reading this because you value good, intelligent and objective journalism. We thank you for your time and your trust.
You also know that the news media is facing an unprecedented crisis. It is likely that you are also hearing of the brutal layoffs and pay-cuts hitting the industry. There are many reasons why the media’s economics is broken. But a big one is that good people are not yet paying enough for good journalism.
We have a newsroom filled with talented young reporters. We also have the country’s most robust editing and fact-checking team, finest news photographers and video professionals. We are building India’s most ambitious and energetic news platform. And we aren’t even three yet.
At ThePrint, we invest in quality journalists. We pay them fairly and on time even in this difficult period. As you may have noticed, we do not flinch from spending whatever it takes to make sure our reporters reach where the story is. Our stellar coronavirus coverage is a good example. You can check some of it here.
This comes with a sizable cost. For us to continue bringing quality journalism, we need readers like you to pay for it. Because the advertising market is broken too.
If you think we deserve your support, do join us in this endeavour to strengthen fair, free, courageous, and questioning journalism, please click on the link below. Your support will define our journalism, and ThePrint’s future. It will take just a few seconds of your time.