New Delhi: Chhattisgarh has topped all states in providing employment to 18,51,536 MNREGA workers despite the lockdown, as per data released by the Ministry of Rural Development on Wednesday.
"Chhattisgarh government's effort to protect the rural economy and preserve livelihood of villagers during the lockdown period are getting the attention at the national level," said a statement from TS Singh Deo, Chhattisgarh's Panchayati Raj Minister.
He said "recognition and appreciation becomes more special as Gram Panchayats of the state are providing relief to labourers through MNREGA by following social distancing in the villages, covering the mouth and maintaining the standards of cleanliness in the atmosphere of Covid-19."
"By providing over 18 lakh jobs under MNREGA, Chhattisgarh becomes one of the best performing states in implementing the scheme. This is much needed to provide succour to people without work and also as a method to kickstart the economy by generating demand," said Singh Deo.
77,85,990 workers are employed across the country according to the e-muster roll released under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. The national participation of the workers working in the state is 24 per cent, which is the highest in the country.
"Despite the nationwide lockdown, performance of Chhattisgarh in MNREGA has not gone down in the current financial year as in previous years. At the national level, the performance of many big states in terms of employment of MNREGA workers is not even half that of the state," said the statement from the minister.
In providing employment to labourers under MNREGA, Rajasthan with 10,79,000 workers is second, Uttar Pradesh third with 9,06,378 workers and West Bengal is fourth with 7,29,000 workers.