The following points highlight the ten measures of extra employment opportunities in rural areas.
1. Rural Works Programme:
The programme emphasised the construction of civil works of a permanent nature (i.e., works undertaken to create durable community assets) to contribute to the mitigation—if not the total eradication—of unemployment in rural areas.
2. Marginal Farmers and Agricultural Labourers:
This scheme was directed towards solving the problem of disguised unemployment and under-employment by assisting needy rural families with subsidised credit in agriculture and related occupations such as dairy, poultry, fishery, pig rearing, horticultural operations, etc.
3. Small Farmers’ Development Agencies:
This scheme was introduced primarily to make credit available to small farmers so as to enable them to use modern technology and, thus, practice intensive cultivation and diversify their activities.
4. Integrated Dry-Land Agricultural Development:
Under the scheme the focus was on works of a permanent nature such as soil conservation and dry land development and harvesting. Such works were highly labour-intensive in nature and were likely to create jobs for 15,000 persons every year at a cost of Rs. 1 crore.”
5. Agro-Service Centres:
The scheme was directed toward setting up workshops, organising agricultural machinery, repairing and hiring facilities as also supplying many technical services like spare parts and inputs. The scheme, no doubt, achieved some success in creating self-employment opportunities for the unemployed graduates and diploma-holders in mechanical, agricultural and electrical engineering and allied areas, as also for the agricultural graduates in science with experience in agriculture or industry.
6. Area Development Scheme:
The main highlight of this scheme was on the development of adequate infrastructure and provision of such facilities as roads, market complexes, etc., in areas commanded by ten major irrigation projects.
7. Crash Programme for Rural Employment:
The primary focus of this scheme was on generating additional employment through a network of highly labour-intensive and productive rural projects of different types. The scheme was to serve two purposes. Its primary objective was to set up one employment-oriented project in each block and provide employment to 100 persons on an average continuously over a working season of 10 months a year.
The second objective was to ensure that each project produced durable assets according to the local development plans. The various schemes included in these projects related to minor irrigation, soil conservation and afforestation, land reclamation, flood control and anti- water-logging, pisciculture, drinking water and road construction.
8. Employment Guarantee Scheme of Maharashtra:
In 1972-73, the Maharashtra Government introduced this novel scheme for the first time to give recognition to the ‘right to work’ included in the Constitution. The scheme was just a reflection of the commitment by the State to provide work to a person who was ready to offer his service. The basic objectives of the scheme was to provide gainful and productive employment.
9. National Rural Employment Programme:
This scheme was launched in October 1980 as a Centrally-sponsored scheme on a 50-50 sharing basis with the States for fulfilling these objectives:
(i) Creating additional employment opportunities
(ii) Creation of durable community assets
(iii) Raising the nutritional standards of the rural people, especially those living below the poverty line.
10. Rural Landless Employment Guarantee Programme (RLEGP):
This scheme was launched on August 1983 to achieve a two-fold objective:
(i) To improve the employment opportunities for rural landless people by providing employment to at least one member of landless labour household up to 100 days in a year and
(ii) To create durable assets for strengthening the infrastructure which will lead to higher growth in the rural economy.
The programme was supposed to be financed entirely by the Central Government.