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Loot of SC/ST funds in last year's Union Budget

 

Karthik Navayan

A February 2011 press release of the National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights Dalit Arthik Adhikar Andolan says: 

* Once again UPA Denies SCs Rs.Cr. 24,570 in Scheduled caste Plan and STs Rs.Cr. 10530 in Tribal Sub Plan

 * Together for SCs & STs, allocates only 4.03% for in both Plan and Non-plan budgets

 *The Demands for Separate budget head for SCs and STs realized

In the budget that has been presented today, the expenditure for both SCs and STs in Plan and Non-plan budgets is a mere 4.03% of the total budget. For a population of 24.4% of the total country this is a mere lip-service and shows no real policy concern for the development of the vulnerable sections of the society.

Once again the allocations for Scheduled Castes Sub Plan and Tribal Sub Plan in the Union budget have a huge gap. The union budget as allocated Rs.Cr. 30551 to the SC development and Rs.Cr. 17,371 to ST development. It is 8.98% of the total plan out lay for SCs and 5.11% to STs. There is a gap of Rs. Cr.24,570 in SCP and RS.Cr. 10,530 for TSP. There is an increase of Rs.Cr.9,927 for SCs and Rs.Cr.5,625 for STs from last years allocation.

The Finance Minister in the Budget speech confirmed that this year the much demanded budget code for SCP 789 and TSP 796 has been opened which enables not only for clear allocations but makes them trackable.

karthik_budget

 It is unfortunate that only 24 departments have allocated for SCs and for STs 26 departments. While all the departments must allocate the funds for development mainly the growth sector departments claim they are unable to allocate the money.

The economic growth departments that have not allocated are Departments of Coal, Road transport and highways, Railways, Power, Space, Civil Aviation, Home, Petroleum and Chemicals etc. This shows that most of these finances are allocated for social services and very little for economic services which means that real development does not take place in the case of SCs and STs. They are not present in the growth sectors of the economy and are mere service providers for the rest of the society. This maintains the age old caste system which makes SCs and STs only to be subservient to the rest of the society. Is Union Government maintaining this through their budget allocations?

Though the Statement 21 and 21 A shows allocations made to SCP and TSP, in the past years these allocations do not correspond to the Detailed Demand for Grants indicating that these funds are not allocated in terms of actuals within the Department Budgets.

It is therefore not surprising that the Human Development Index for India is 119 out of 169 countries below the countries like Sri Lanka.

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