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Employment Planning for the Weaker Sections in Rural India

Pravin Visaria and Leela Visaria
Economic and Political Weekly
Vol. 8, No. 4/6, Annual Number (Feb., 1973), pp. 269-276
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4362297
Page Count: 9
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Employment Planning for the Weaker Sections in Rural India
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Abstract

Since the Approach to the Fifth Plan anticipates that the additional wage-employment will fall short of the estimated increase in labour force and envisages agriculture as the residual employment sector to absorb the increments to the labour force, public rural works will have to form an important component of the employment generating activities during the Plan period. In the Third Plan's Rural Works Programmes in the Crash Scheme for Rural Employment started in 1971-72, in the Pilot Intensive Rural Employment Project launched in 1972-73, and in Maharashtra's Employment Guarantee Scheme, we already have some experience of rural works programmes. This article focuses, in the light of this experience and the characteristics of the weaker sections, on the several research issues and variables that deserve careful attention in the planning of future employment programmes in rural areas. Its findings underline that the critical problem is productivity of available employment rather than open unemployment; that there is no clear distinction between the ranks of small cultivators and of uncultivating wage-earners; that there are important regional variations even within the states; that the location of and the wage rates offered by the works programmes would be significant factors in effective employment creation; and that substantial efforts would have to go into strengthening the organisational capacities for formulating and implementing the various programmes. It also suggests lines along which further research would prove useful.

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