Transformation of Tribals through MGNREGA in Attappady Block of Palakkad District, Kerala Some Case studies

  • V P Lakshmi Devi Research Scholar, Centre for Extension, The Gandhigram Rural Institute , Gandhigram, Tamil Nadu, India
  • M P Boraian Professor & Director, Centre for Extension, The Gandhigram Rural Institute-Deemed to be University, Gandhigram, Tamil Nadu, India
Keywords: Employment generation, rural poverty, vulnerable groups, impact of MGNREGA, tribal transformation


MGNREGS is a mammoth employment programme, launched more than a decade ago in the rural diaspora of the Indian sub-continent, with a massive annual budget of Rs.60,000crore, aimed at eradicating rural poverty and unemployment in one stroke, targeting a multitude of mainstream rural workers, as well as vulnerable categories such as the adivasis, the aged, the differently abled and disabled persons. Acclaimed as a model by most other countries, MGNREGS entitles every worker with wage employment for 100 days, augments their income and forms the base for a sustainable rural livelihood. With a plethora of studies made on the impact of this scheme on poverty eradication, the present study conducted in early 2019, concentrates on its impact on the primitive and nomadic tribal groups in Attappadi , a tribal- prominent block in Palakkad district of Kerala State. Conducted primarily thro’ Case studies, the present research highlights the role of the scheme in achieving not only the intended outcome, but also its unintended outcome. The study has profiled the role of the scheme in not only providing livelihood to all the workers, but also in restoring the normal life of persons with disabilities such as mental depression, speech and visual impairment.The mentally and physically challenged workers, who were hitherto confined to their homes or settlements and were a frustrated lot, are now able to ease their depression, while working, and interacting with fellow workers, and find cheer and solace in their company.

Besides, it has provided physical safety, economic security, and social status to the deserted women, divorcees, and children with disabilities. Though living in poverty, the fellow workers have proved that they have concern and commitment for not only their distraught co-workers but also for their distressed family members. By sharing the work of the weak and the vulnerable at the worksite, they have demonstrated that “humanitarianism” exists amidst destitution and deprivation and “compassion and camaraderie” are the primary assets of the workers, than poverty and backwardness.

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