Poonam Mahajan

Member of Parliament,North-Central Mumbai

National President-BJYM

poonam Mahajan

Poonam Mahajan

Member of Parliament,North-Central Mumbai

National President-BJYM

Impact of MGNREGS on bonded labourers, Ministry of Labour and Employment

GOVERNMENT OF INDIA MINISTRY OF LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT LOKSABHA UNSTARRED QUESTION NO. 3015 TO BE ANSWERED ON 06.08.2018

Will the Minister of LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT be pleased to state: (a)whether the Government has ascertained the impact of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee (MGNREG) Scheme on the release and rehabilitation of the bonded labourers; (b)if so, the details and the findings thereof; (c)whether the objectives of the MGNREG Scheme have been aligned with the objectives of the Rehabilitation of Bonded Labourers Scheme and if so, the details thereof; and (d)the number of bonded labourers who availed the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme during each of the last five years, State/UT-wise?

ANSWER

MINISTER OF STATE (IC) FOR LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT (SHRI SANTOSH KUMAR GANGWAR)

(a) & (b): No such impact study has been done by the Government. (c) & (d): These are entirely two different Schemes formulated to achieve different objectives. MGNREG Scheme provides for enhancing the livelihood security in rural areas by providing at least 100 days of guaranteed wage employment in a financial year, to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work. Whereas, the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976, provides for abolition of Bonded Labour System with a view to preventing the economic and physical exploitation of the weaker sections. The Bonded Labour System is a dynamic problem as it can occur and re-occur at any point of time in an industry and occupation. The Bonded Labour Rehabilitation Scheme has been formulated to achieve the objectives and implementation of the provisions of the Bonded Labour System (Abolition) Act, 1976. The Scheme provides for financial assistance to the States in their task of implementing the provisions of the said Act including rehabilitation of released bonded labourers.

The Government has revamped the Centrally Sponsored Plan Scheme for Rehabilitation of Bonded Labourers with effect from 17th May, 2016. The salient features of the ‘Central Sector Scheme for the Rehabilitation of Bonded Labourer, 2016’ are as under:

(1) Financial assistance is provided for rehabilitation of a rescued bonded labourer at the rate of rupees one lakh for adult male beneficiary, Rs. 2 lakh for special category beneficiaries such as children including orphans or those rescued from organized & forced begging rings or other forms of forced child labour, and women and Rs. 3 lakh in cases of bonded or forced labour involving extreme cases of deprivation or marginalization such as trans-genders, or women or children rescued from ostensible sexual exploitation such as brothels, massage parlours, placement agencies etc., or trafficking, or in cases of differently abled persons, or in situations where the District Magistrate deems fit.

(2) The financial assistance for rehabilitation is 100% funded by the Central Government.

(3) The Scheme also provides for financial assistance of Rs. 4.50 lakh per district to the States for conducting survey of bonded labourers, Rs. 1.00 Lakh for evaluatory studies and Rs. 10 Lakhs per State per annum for awareness generation. Central Government will give 50% of the amount required for conducting Survey, Awareness Generation and Evaluatory Studies in advance. A State may conduct survey once in every three years per sensitive district. A State may conduct five Evaluatory Studies per year.

(4) The release of rehabilitation assistance has been linked with conviction of the accused. However, immediate assistance upto Rs. 20,000/- may be provided to the rescued bonded labour by the District Administration irrespective of the status of conviction proceedings.

(5) The Scheme provides for creation of a Bonded Labour Rehabilitation Fund at District level by each State with a permanent corpus of at least Rs. 10 lakh at the disposal of the District Magistrate for extending immediate help to the released bonded labourers.

(6) The benefits prescribed above shall be, in addition to, other cash or non-cash benefits which a beneficiary under this scheme is entitled to, by or under any other scheme including MGNREG Scheme or law applicable for the time being in force.

The number of bonded labourers who may have availed the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme is not centrally maintained.

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