Supreme Court Judge Justice P. S. Narasimha recused himself from hearing a plea filed by Swaraj Abhiyan seeking direction to ensure adequate funds for implementing the rural employment guarantee scheme, MGNREGA. Justice Narasimha cited his previous involvement in the matter as a lawyer and referred the case to Chief Justice of India D. Y. Chandrachud for the constitution of a fresh Bench.
Swaraj Abhiyan’s plea highlights a crisis faced by MGNREGA workers due to pending wages and the exhaustion of allocated funds before the conclusion of the year. The plea emphasizes the need for a mechanism to ensure adequate funds for States and compliance with MGNREGA provisions, including timely wage payments and compensation for delays.
Swaraj Abhiyan had initially filed a PIL in 2015, seeking relief for rural poor and farmers, and later submitted an interim application in the same matter. The case underscores the ongoing challenges in ensuring financial support for MGNREGA implementation and the role of the judiciary in addressing these issues.