Narendra Singh Tomar
Narendra Singh Tomar

Labourers who are returning to their native villages on account of coronavirus would be provided employment through MGNREGA and for that the central government has allocated Rs40,000 cr in the first phase, said Union Minister for Agriculture, Panchayat and Rural Development Narendra Singh Tomar, during a telephonic interview with ‘Free Press Journal’ on Friday

The Minister was replying to a question on employment for labourers who were migrating back to village.

Tomar said that labourers who were returning home won’t face any difficulty as they would be getting work at their own village. Also, other employment opportunities were being explored, Tomar said, and added the state governments had been directed to make new job cards for those who did not have job cards at present.

He said the overall expenditure on MGNREGA all over the country would be Rs1 lakh crore and Madhya Pradesh would also get its fair share.

Tomar said after the corona pandemic ends, many of the labourers would return to the cities but some of them would remain in the villages. The Central government has already started planning for such labourers who stayed back by encouraging the setting up of food processing units and agriculture related industries in the rural areas.

The Minister said they would amend the Essential Commodities Act whereby commodities such as cereals, edible oils, oilseeds, pulses, onions and potato are going to be deregulated, and the farmers would be able to get the right price of their produce. He said that huge storage capacities are being created for proper storage and major logistic hubs are going to be developed.

Answering question on elections to be held in 24 Assembly seats in Madhya Pradesh, Tomar said the BJP has already started preparations. “We are going to win all the 24 seats in the state and in the Gwalior region I am working in close coordination with Jyotiraditya Scindia,” he said.

Denying that there was disgruntlement among the BJP workers and leaders, he said everyone is working unitedly for BJP’s victory.

He said MP chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan was working in the right direction in the fight against coronavirus and the centre was going to provide all possible help to him.

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