The Indian Railways has generated more than 550,000 man-days of work under the Gareeb Kalyan Rozgar Abhiyaan in six States of Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.
Piyush Goyal, Minister of Railways & Commerce and Industry is closely monitoring the progress made in these projects and the generation of work opportunities for the migrant workers of these states under this scheme. Around 165 railway infrastructure projects are being executed in these states worth Rs 29.88 billion. Till August 14, 11,296 workers were engaged under the programme and the payment of Rs 13.36 billion was released to the contractors for the projects being implemented.
The Railways has appointed nodal officers in each district as well as in the states for close coordination with the state governments. Goyal has directed the railway administration at the zonal level to act proactively to ensure that migrants are engaged in projects and paid accordingly.
Railway has identified several works to be executed under this scheme. The works are related to construction and maintenance of approach roads for level crossings, development and cleaning of silted waterways, trenches and drains along the track, construction and maintenance of approach road to railway stations, repair and widening of existing railway embankments and cuttings, plantation of trees at the extreme boundary of railway land and protection works of existing embankments, cuttings and bridges.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had launched the nationwide employment-cum- rural public works campaign named Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan to empower and provide livelihood opportunities in areas witnessing reverse migration from big cities due to the COVID-19 pandemic on June 20. The prime minister had announced that an amount of Rs 500 billion would be spent for building durable rural infrastructure under the programme.
This 125-day programme is being undertaken in a mission mode and involves the focused implementation of 25 categories of works and activities in 116 districts, each with a large concentration of returnee migrant workers.
The programme is a convergent effort between 12 different ministries and departments, viz. rural development, panchayati raj, road transport & highways, mines, drinking water & sanitation, environment, railways, petroleum & natural gas, new & renewable energy, border roads, telecom and agriculture, to expedite implementation of 25 public infrastructure and other works related to augmentation of livelihood opportunities.