Intensive campaign to increase reach and effectiveness of
National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) launched
5th July 2008
(In the interim period between the end of the first phase of the PACS Programme and the start of the second phase (PACS Plus), the Management Consultants of the programme, in consultation with DFID-India, have launched an intensive campaign to increase the reach and effectiveness of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS). The campaign, to be rolled out in a phased manner across the six PACS Programme states, will run for a period of seven months, from June to December 2008. www.empowerpoor.org)
In Uttar Pradesh, the campaign seeks to touch 20 districts by empowering 140 Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in central, eastern and Bundelkhand regions. Village awareness campaigns and village meetings will be conducted to gather testimonials of good and bad practices in the implementation of the scheme.
Over 350 testimonials of villagers who availed the scheme are expected to be collected from the state. “Written case studies with supporting photographs and video documentation of these individuals will be gathered and presented in district advocacy workshops before media and concerned officials for redressal,” said Poonam Mehta of Development Alternatives while explaining the features of the campaign.
A cluster level planning workshop for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) of Central Uttar Pradesh was conducted at ICCMRT Indranagar, to acquaint participating CSO heads with the details of this campaign. CSO heads were trained in conceptualizing village awareness campaigns, preparing reports and mobilizing the community through a series of group activities.
BK Bhagwat Assistant Commissioner in charge of NREGA cell UP government was present for the workshop. Answering questions about the scheme, he also advised organization heads that, “It is important to read both schedules of the scheme and stay updated with circulars which are published online at the state rural development portal”. Giving participants the links of the website portals and helpline numbers, he assured the organizations full support from the government.
The campaign processes will culminate in state-level workshops for policymakers and the media, with the participation of top officials from relevant departments such as rural development, panchayati raj, and women and child development.
- Discriminatory practices against women, such as unequal employment opportunities, unequal wages, lack of Creche facilities, and inequitable workload.
- Exclusion of dalits, tribals, women, disabled and other marginalised groups and
- Improper and corrupt practices, such as fraud in wage payments, use of contractors, failure to create a shelf of works, etc.
It is expected that over 1740 villages in UP will be touched through the campaign.