New Delhi: In what could give jolt to the UPA’s flagship project MNREGA, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh have crossed swords over the efficacy of the scheme.

In a letter to Prime Minister, Sharad Pawar has urged for some amendments in MNREGA as the involvement of workers under the scheme has hit agriculture and food production.

Pawar is of the opinion that work under the MNREGA should be stopped during the periods of sowing and harvesting of crops. Notably, MNREGA has provision of providing 100 days work to a family in a year.

On the other hand, Jairam Ramesh has rebutted all the claims made by Pawar. Jairam shot off a 20-page letter to the PM mentioning about the benefits of MNREGA for the rural unemployed people. Seventy to 80 percent work under MNREGA is done for agricultural development. Most of the work is done for soil and water conservation and leveling of farm fields, which has increased the crops productivity. 

However, Jairam has assured that he will study and analyse the recommendations of Sharad Pawar.

JPN/Bureau