Women’s Participation In NREGS Continues To Rise, By 59% This Fiscal

Syllabus: GS-II; Polity & Governance

Subject: Governance

Topic: Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population

Issue:  The female Labour Force Participation Rate

Context: As per the Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS), published by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, the female Labour Force Participation Rate has increased in the country in recent years.

Highlights of the Survey:

  • FY 2023-24: MGNREGS sees a record high of 59.25% women participation, up from 57.47% (2022-23) and 53.19% (2020-21, during COVID-19).
  • Women contribute 141.37 crore person-days out of 238.62 crores, showing a positive trend.
  • Southern states like Kerala and Tamil Nadu have high participation (above 70%), while northern states like Uttar Pradesh hover around 40%.
  • In 2023-24, Jammu and Kashmir, Lakshadweep, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra record the lowest women participation rates, with some improvement in Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, and Lakshadweep.
  • PLFS data shows a rise in Female LFPR in rural areas, increasing from 18.2% (2017-18) to 30.5% (2022-23). Female unemployment rate drops from 3.8% (2017-18) to 1.8% (2022-23).


  • MGNREGA,2005 guarantees the “right to work” for a minimum of 100 days of unskilled employment to all willing rural citizens, at the government-set minimum wage.
  • If work is not assigned within 15 days, the applicant is entitled to receive an unemployment allowance.
  • Section 17 of the MGNREGA has mandated a social audit of all the works executed under the MGNREGA.
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