Centre allows industry, road work and MGNREGA to start in rural India

In order to kickstart the rural economy in both, the farm and non-farm segments, the Central government granted a series of relaxations in the second phase of nationwide However, experts said unless the implementation is monitored properly at the ground level, much of the easing out could just remain on paper.

In the case of MGNREGA, the Central government has imposed strict social distancing norms while allowing all kinds of works, with priority to be given to water conservation and irrigation activities. This assumes significance in view of the forthcoming monsoon season.

MNREGA is one of the big sources of rural employment for landless labour, providing jobs to about 50-60 million households every year in rural India.

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The Centre has also allowed dovetailing of existing central and state government schemes on irrigation and water conservation with to create more employment opportunities in the rural areas which is seeing a massive influx of migrants from urban India in the last few weeks.

According to some estimates, around 500,000-600,000 urban migrants have

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E-commerce firms seek clarity on non-essentials; gear up for MHA guidelines

E-commerce such as Amazon, Flipkart and sellers have reached out to the government to seek clarity on whether online retailers would be allowed to sell non-essential items according to the latest MHA guidelines, according to people familiar with the development.

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has come up with fresh guidelines allowing e-commerce to operate, ensuring strict social distancing without any restriction on their timing and closure, after April 20, 2020. While this is an important development, there is a bit of ambiguity because while inter-state transportation of non-essential items has been allowed, it is not clear whether e-commerce would be able to sell them.

“The ambiguity is still there. It doesn’t say that e-commerce players can sell all the items including non-essential products on their platforms. A lot of e-commerce firms are asking the government to provide more clarity,” said a senior official working with an e-commerce company. “For instance, a delivery associate might be carrying a television (phone, laptop) and the police on the ground might seize these items,” he added.

Also, industry insiders said that the main problems e-commerce firms are facing

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