The Union Government has made mandatory for workers in rural areas enrolled under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA) to have an Aadhaar card.
Those who have registered under the scheme will be required to give furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar card or undergo the enrolment process till March 31, 2017.
- For this purpose, government has invoked Section 7 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, benefits and services) Act, 2016.
- This section allows Government to ask an individual to undergo authentication or furnish proof of possession of Aadhaar when the government gives subsidy, benefit or service from Consolidated Fund of India (CFI).
- The rationale behind making Aadhaar cards mandatory for the MGNREGA is to prevent leakages of subsidies and ensure that the beneficiaries get their due.
- It will ensure effective implementation of the Aadhaar-linked Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme aimed at checking leakages of welfare funds.
- Under DBT scheme, all cash benefits are transferred to beneficiary’s bank account. Union Government has asked its departments and State governments to widen scope of DBT to include all monetary transfers.
- Note: The expenditure for the MGNREGS is met by Government from the Consolidated Fund of India.