Budget allocates INR 39,000 crore for NREGS

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The Central government has hiked the allocation for its flagship rural job scheme by 144% to INR 39,000 crore.

'I am allocating INR3 9,000 crore for NREGA (National Rural Employment Guarantee Act). This is a hike of 144%,' Finance Minster Pranab Mukherjee said while presenting the budget for fiscal 2009-10 in the Lok Sabha.

'NREGA is a magnificent success. The government is committed to providing a wage of INR100 a day to rural households in convergence with other schemes for rural areas. One hundred and fifteen pilot districts have been identified for these convergence schemes. The details will be given by the minister for rural development,' Mukherjee added.

The finance minister said the government would soon publicise a draft food security (guarantee) bill and seek comments from everybody before finalising the bill. In its election manifesto earlier this year, the Congress had promised 25 kg of rice or wheat a month at INR 3 per kg to families below the poverty line.

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