NREGS RULE CHANGES
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Context: National Mobile Monitoring System (NMMS) app launched to capture of attendance of workers at MGNREGS worksites was criticized by several civil societies. In response to these criticisms, the Centre has organised a "Samvaad" on the "good governance initiatives" that have been taken under MGNREGS.
- The National Mobile Monitoring System (NMMS) app is a new initiative by the Ministry of Rural Development to improve the transparency and accountability of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS).
- The app allows the real-time capture of the attendance of workers at MGNREGS worksites along with geo-tagged photographs.
- The app was launched in May 2021 and has been made mandatory for all worksites where muster rolls are issued for 20 or more workers from January 2023.
- However, the app has faced criticism from civil society organisations (CSOs) who have raised concerns about its feasibility, reliability and impact on the rights and entitlements of the workers.
Some of the issues highlighted by the CSOs
- The app requires a smartphone with internet connectivity, which may not be available or accessible to many workers, especially in remote and tribal areas.
- The app may exclude or penalise workers who are unable to mark their attendance due to technical glitches, network issues, low battery or lack of Aadhaar verification.
- The app may compromise the privacy and security of the workers' data, as there is no clarity on how the data is stored, shared and used by the authorities.
- The app may undermine the role and participation of gram panchayats, social audit units and other local institutions in monitoring and implementing MGNREGS.
- In response to criticisms, the Centre has organised a "Samvaad" with CSOs on the "good governance initiatives" that it claims have been taken under MGNREGS.
- The Samvaad is a platform for dialogue and consultation between the government and the CSOs on various aspects of MGNREGS, including the NMMS app.
- The objective of the Samvaad is to address the issues and challenges faced by the stakeholders, share best practices and innovations, and seek feedback and suggestions for improving the scheme.
- The Samvaad is a first-of-its-kind initiative by the Centre to engage with CSOs on MGNREGS. It reflects the government's willingness to listen to diverse voices and perspectives on the scheme. It also provides an opportunity for the CSOs to voice their concerns and recommendations on the NMMS app and other aspects of MGNREGS.
- The Samvaad can be a constructive and collaborative exercise to enhance the effectiveness and inclusiveness of MGNREGS, which is one of the largest social security programmes in the world.
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National Mobile Monitoring System (NMMS): https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/national-mobile-monitoring-system
Q. How effective is the National Mobile Monitoring System (NMMS) app in ensuring transparency and accountability of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), and what are the main challenges and concerns raised by the civil society organizations regarding its implementation?