The BJP on Monday said MGNREGA had become synonymous with "loot and plunder" under the UPA rule but the Modi government made it effective and suitable for workers, denouncing the Congress claim it was "the most efficacious" government scheme.
The BJP reaction came after the Congress demanded the "Congress brainchild" be scaled up and made open-ended to meet the massive increase in demand due to the coronavirus crisis. It also came after Congress president Sonia Gandhi wrote an article, highlighting the importance of the employment guarantee scheme and crediting her party for introducing it.
Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said the scheme has proved to be the world's largest social welfare programme and "clearly the most efficacious government scheme".
Responding to the claim, the BJP said the Modi government made MGNREGA more effective and ended corruption in it.
BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said in a statement that Rs 3.95 lakh crore has been allocated under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act in six years of the Modi government while 1.75 lakh crore was allocated during the 10 years of Congress-led UPA dispensation.
He said for providing relief to migrant workers, the BJP government allocated Rs 40,000 crore under the scheme in addition to the already allocated Rs 61,00 crore in the 2020-21 budget.
"Before saying anything about MNRGEA, Sonia Gandhi and Congress leaders should look at the funds allocated under MNREGA it. The employment guarantee scheme had become synonymous with loot and plunder during UPA's tenure," Hussain said.
He said the Congress which has been "sidelined" by the people is making false charges to keep itself relevant.