Daily wagers in Kerala earned way more than their counterparts in more industrialised states like Gujarat and Maharashtra and earned more than double the national average of Rs 373.30. The latest data in RBI’s handbook of statistics on Indian states showed that last fiscal (2021-22), construction workers’ average daily wage in Kerala was more than three times of that in the lowest paying states Tripura and Madhya Pradesh.
As per the data, which was released on Saturday, a daily wager in the construction sector earned Rs 837.3 a day in Kerala, compared to Rs 250 in Tripura, Rs 267 in Madhya Pradesh, Rs 296 in Gujarat and Rs 362 in Maharashtra. The other two top states are Jammu & Kashmir and Tamil Nadu, where the wages were Rs 519 and Rs 478, respectively.
Other states with relatively higher pay were Himachal Pradesh with Rs 462, Haryana with Rs 420 and Andhra Pradesh with Rs 409, the FY22 data compiled by the central bank showed.
For workers in the agricultural and non-agricultural sectors, Kerala topped the list followed by Himachal Pradesh. Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat were down in the chart.
But ironically, the industrialised states attracted the most investments in comparison to states like Kerala, Jammu & Kashmir, and Himachal Pradesh. As per government data, Gujarat reported the highest gross fixed capital formation (GFCF) of over Rs 72,000 crore in FY20. Maharashtra came second with over Rs 69,900 crore, followed by Tamil Nadu with Rs 45,900 crore. Karnataka reported over Rs 27,000 crore of GFCF in the year.
Earlier this year, The Centre notified fresh wage rates under the rural job guarantee programme NREGS for financial year 2022-23, with 21 out of 34 states and Union Territories getting less than 5 per cent increase and 10 states getting more than 5 per cent hike. There is no change in the wage rates of three states – Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura. Of the 31 states and UTs, which saw a hike in wages, the maximum 7.14 per cent has been recorded in Goa — from Rs 294 per day in 2021-22 to Rs 315 per day in 2022-23. The lowest increase of 1.77 per cent is in Meghalaya where the new wage rate has been fixed at Rs 230 per day from the existing Rs 226 per day.
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