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NHRC seeks reply from Centre, seven states on MGNREGA payments

National Human Rights Commission on Friday issued notices to Secretary of Rural Development ministry and chief secretaries of seven states in connection with the non-payment of wages under the MGNREGA which allegedly forced people to commit suicide.

Taking a suo motu cognisance of media reports that seven families across Maharashtra and Jharkhand lost their members, who killed themselves owing to delayed payments under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) scheme, the Commission took the step.

According to an NHRC statement, the Commission has issued notices to the Secretary of Ministry of Rural Development and chief secretaries of the governments of Maharashtra, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Bihar, Kerala, Rajasthan and Andhra Pradesh calling for a report on the matter within six weeks. Reportedly, 27 lakh labourers in West Bengal, 18.20 lakh in Bihar, 13.40 lakh in Kerala, 11 lakh in Rajasthan and 8.7 lakh in Andhra Pradesh are still waiting for their wages under MGNREGA.
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