National Mobile Monitoring System

The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGREGS) is a government initiative in India that aims to provide employment to rural citizens. Starting in January 2023, the Indian government has made it mandatory for all worksites, regardless of the number of workers, to digitally capture attendance using the National Mobile Monitoring System (NMMS) app.

Background on the NMMS App

  • The NMMS app was launched in May 2021 with the goal of increasing transparency and citizen oversight of the MGREGS program.
  • It allows real-time attendance to be recorded at MGREGS worksites, along with geo-tagged photographs.
  • From May 16, 2022, the use of the app became compulsory for all worksites with 20 or more workers.

Challenges Faced by the NMMS App

  • Lack of technical support and the requirement for workers to own a smartphone and have access to an internet connection.
  • Necessity of uploading two time-stamped and geo-tagged photographs of workers, which can be burdensome for those who have already completed their work for the day.

Decision to Make the NMMS App Mandatory for All Worksites

  • Despite the challenges faced by the NMMS app, the Indian government has decided to make its use mandatory for all worksites starting in January 2023.

Criticisms of the NMMS App

  • Activists and workers have raised concerns about the endless conditions placed on MGREGS workers, which they feel may discourage people from relying on the program and hinder its effectiveness.

The implementation of the NMMS app for digitally capturing attendance at MGREGS worksites has faced challenges and criticisms. While the app was intended to increase transparency and accountability, it has faced issues with technical support, internet connectivity, and the burden it places on workers. Despite these challenges, the Indian government has decided to make the use of the app mandatory for all worksites starting in January 2023.

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