Chandigarh farmers suffer due to labour shortage

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Mullanpur (Chandigarh), May 29 (ANI): With the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) providing jobs to many labourers closer to their native places in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, there is a massive labour shortage ahead of the paddy sowing and transplantation season in Chandigarh's Mullanpur town.

Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are reportedly the two main regions from where the labourers migrate to Chandigarh to work in farm fields.

The farmers of Mullanpur said they are finding it difficult to work in their fields due to the labour shortage.

"Due to (employment) schemes introduced by the government, there is a shortage of labour in this area. We only find labourers during the harvesting season. At first, we don't get labourers and the ones, who come demand for higher wages," said Surjit Singh, a farmer.

Meanwhile, the migrant labourers, who are still working here, said that MNREGA has proved to be a boon for the other labourers, as it provides them work closer to their homes with higher wages.

"The labourers are working under the scheme that the government has introduced. They finish their work and go back to their homes to their wives and children. So, what is the need of coming so far in search of work where they are getting work over there. I also want to go but the farmers don't let me leave this place," said Mahesh Kumar, a migrant labourer.

MNREGA aims at enhancing the livelihood security of people in rural areas by guaranteeing hundred days of wage-employment in a financial year to a rural household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work. (ANI)

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