Efficacy of employment generation programs in providing water security: an assessment of MGNREGS in Madhya Pradesh

A majority of the permissible works being carried out under MGNREGS relate to building of assets aimed at enhancing rural water security. The present study attempts to assess how durable these assets have been and how effective MGNREGS has been in helping improve rural water security. The results based on a case study in the state of Madhya Pradesh show that despite the restrictions imposed on non-use of any machinery for construction of structures and several other limitations, the water structures that have been built are of a reasonably good quality and hold a great promise in improving rural water security. There are, however, some impediments in converting water available in these structures into utilisable water. Successful mediation through appropriate intervention strategies can not only enable beneficiary farmers to use the available water more productively, it can also enhance more productive utilisation of MGNREGS money invested in asset creation.