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Empowerment of Women through MGNREGS in South Western Region of Punjab

Jaspinder Kaur* and Shalini Sharma

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The Indian Journal of Economics and Development (2019) 15(1), 123-131
DOI: 10.5958/2322-0430.2019.00018.0
Indexed in Clarivate Analytics (ESCI)

Jaspinder Kaur* and Shalini Sharma

Department of Economics and Sociology, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana (141004)
*Corresponding author’s email: brarjaspinder20@gmail.com

ABSTRACT
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) aimed at providing direct employment to the
deserving rural people, has been in operation for the last many years. The present study was conducted to assess the impact of MGNREGS on women in the south-western region of Punjab. Two districts i.e. Bathinda and Sri Muktsar Sahib were randomly selected to make the study representative of the whole southwestern region of Punjab. The data were collected from 120 women workers of MGNREGS through self-structured interview schedule in the year 2017-18. The study recorded significant changes in the consumption pattern of milk, fruit, vegetables, eggs and non-vegetarians items after joining the scheme. A significant women workers could now purchase clothes of their choice for themselves and their family, the majority of whom were dependent on the used clothes of their patrons. The study recorded the significant change in respondents’ participation in decision making pertaining to various spheres of the household such as allocation of resources, the decision about children’s education and marriage. Financial independence due to MGNREGAhad impacted a majority by improving their well-being and agency aspects and had made a dent in empowering erstwhile marginalized rural womenfolk.
Keywords
Decision making, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS), Women empowerment.

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