The Mamata Banerjee-led TMC again crosses swords with the Centre over the freezing of funds for the NREGS and PMAY-G schemes in Bengal. Meanwhile, common people eagerly await an end to their misery
Arati Das at her home in Bilkanda, North 24 Parganas district; (Photo: Debajyoti Chakraborty)
Arati Das watches her step as she sets foot into her room, for she can easily knock over the earthen pot of rice kept by the door. It’s a cost Arati can hardly bear, for she can afford to cook only once a day. The 42-year-old was forced to take up a job as a seamstress after the local panchayat stopped providing her employment under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGS). Her husband Dilip, 50, works at a garment factory. “Earlier, I’d earn Rs 3,000 extra every month. Now, my income varies between Rs 500 and Rs 1,000,” says Arati. The family, from Bilkanda I gram panchayat in the North 24 Parganas district, struggles to make ends meet on the meagre Rs 6,000-Rs 7,000 Dilip earns.