Soil and Water Conservation Works through National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) in Andhra Pradesh — An Analysis of Livelihood Impact

The impact of National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS) has been studied on rural livelihoods and the nature of soil and water conservation (SWC) works. NREGS is under implementation in almost all the rural districts of the country with the major objective of enhancing livelihoods through productive works. Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh are the three states leading in scheme implementation with a large number of works, expenditure and employment. In Andhra Pradesh, soil and water conservation (SWC) works have accounted for over 80 per cent. The share of labour wages under the scheme has been 80 per cent with only 20 per cent for material, which is well within the prescribed norm of 40 per cent for the latter. The field study in the Ananthapur district has indicated that almost two-thirds of the beneficiaries are farmers. The scheme has brought down the migration levels from about 27 per cent to only 7 per cent in the study villages. The linear regression function has brought out that the number of family members participating in the NREGS is significantly influenced by income from other sources, family size and landholding. The NREGS earnings are being used mainly for food, education and health security. Although the scheme provides opportunity for 100 days of wage guarantee, the actual average employment is only for 25 days per household. Ideally, this gap needs to be bridged at least in the distress districts. The study has observed that SWC works in agricultural lands, especially in the rainfed areas need to be continued. However, some works require structural modifications for a better impact.

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Agricultural Economics Research Review, Volume 22, Conference Number
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 Record created 2017-04-01, last modified 2018-01-22

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