Global Resources

India’s National Rural Employment Guarantee Act: women’s participation and impacts in Himachal Pradesh, Kerala and Rajasthan

Author: R. M. Sudarshan
Publisher: Institute of Development Studies UK
Publication Date: Jan 2011

This research examines women's participation in NREGS (National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme) in selected areas in three states: Kerala, Himachal and Rajasthan. The Indian government's NREGS has succeeded in bringing large numbers of women into paid work, many of them for the first time. 

This report explores the complex reasons why women's participation in the scheme varies significantly across and within states, and suggests improvements that could maximise impact. NREGS has achieved some success in empowering women, economically and socially. But the author suggests that minor changes to the scheme, to address local development challenges and priorities, could deliver better outcomes.