National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme in Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan: Some recent evidence
This paper presents results on the participation of rural workers in the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme based on a pilot survey of three villages in the Chittoor district, Andhra Pradesh (AP), India. These villages are Kaligiri, Obulayyapale and Reddivaripalle, and they were surveyed in December 2007. In contrast to an earlier study of ours on Rajasthan, Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) participated in higher numbers in AP, but in both states these groups participated for slightly lower spells than the residual group of ‘Others’. We find that AP performed better than Rajasthan in terms of targeting poorer caste and income groups such as SCs, STs and landless households. The number of days worked on average was much higher than suggested by other assessments. Our econometric analysis further reinforces the view that disadvantaged groups are not only more likely to participate but also for longer spells. Thus the performance of the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme has been far from dismal.