By – Ishani Panda & Yogita Malhotra
In the wake of the novel Coronavirus disease, the entire economic structure of India seemed to weaken considerably. With the number of infected people mushrooming, death toll burgeoning and poverty knocking at the door of millions due to joblessness.
It seemed quite debatable as to how Prime Minister Narendra Modi would save the entire nation from the clutches of an economic crisis which threatened to throttle the nation.
Amidst all the hullabaloo on inflation, banning Chinese products and his upcoming strategy for the economic welfare of the people, Modi launched the Atma Nirbhar Uttar Pradesh Rojgar Abhiyan through video conferencing in the presence of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
The Atma Nirbhar Uttar Pradesh Rojgar Abhiyan will cover 31 districts of Uttar Pradesh, which has seen more than 30 lakh migrant labourers return home following the lockdown in the country.
It aims to provide employment to 1.25 crore migrant workers and others in Uttar Pradesh who lost their jobs during the pandemic. It will be undertaken as a part of the Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan that the Prime Minister started on June 20 for 116 districts in six states in the country.
This comprehensive scheme is a part of Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyan, launched on June 20 this year with the funding of Rs 50,000 crore for 116 districts in six states. The self-reliant campaign will be carried out in mission by the government to support the migrant workers.
The programme aimed at boosting livelihood opportunities in rural India will “create durable infrastructure along with boosting employment opportunities,” an official communique said.
The PM praised the Uttar Pradesh government for its fight against the coronavirus pandemic and said that the state managed to control the outbreak in spite of the challenges posed by its huge population.
Modi, while launching the job scheme, also praised the people of Uttar Pradesh for their fight against the pandemic.
“Uttar Pradesh has shown courage and intelligence in combating the coronavirus. The way Uttar Pradesh took control of the situation and emerged successfully is praiseworthy. I applaud the 24 crore residents of the state. They have set an example for the world.”
The Uttar Pradesh government is expected to employ 1.25 crore people under these schemes out of which 60 lakh will get employment in rural areas, and 40 lakh under micro-small and medium enterprises.
In addition to this, a loan of Rs 10,000 crore has been allocated to thousands of entrepreneurs under the Mudra Yojana for self-employment.
He also interacted with many migrant workers, resolving their trials and tribulations. One of them, Kurbaan Ali, who returned to Siddharthnagar from Mumbai, used to work as a carpenter. He exchanged information with PM on the public works underway in the village.
Moreover, the scheme assures that each migrant worker can make both ends meet by gaining employment following his skills. He also added that the extensive program is different from the previously launched schemes.
The Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan campaign is a one-time scheme, chiefly focusses to employ those needful migrant workers who returned during the lockdown in their villages, and who have been toiling hard every day to endure.
He also said that the state government under Yogi Adityanath had provided 30 lakh houses to poor and three lakh government jobs.
The state had controlled law and order situation, made it open defecation free in the last three years and has transferred Rs 5000 crore to 3.25 crore women under the Jan Dhan Yojana in the last few months.
The nationwide scheme which will run for 125 days has a resource backing of Rs 50,000 crore by the Centre.
The scheme has gained political outrage with Opposition states such has Congress-ruled Chhattisgarh and TMC led West Bengal criticizing the union government for their exclusion from the scheme.
While it is a great move by the Centre to bring the employment project to the rural and unemployed migrant workers, it is still questionable as to what will the PM do for other states’ migrant workers whose count might be lower but are still lurking in poverty.
Lack of unemployment can raise the issues of crime and suicide if proper steps are not taken by the Centre.