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Excecutive Summary of SCSP and TSP study

by mudassar — last modified 2013-04-08 14:56

A Study report on Implementation of Scheduled Castes Sub Plan & Tribal Sub Plan in the Union and State Budgets of India. (Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh) in 2011. Conducted by CBGA and NCDHR.

Executive Summary




The study entitled “Implementation of Scheduled Castes Sub Plan and Tribal Sub Plan in the Union and State Budgets” evaluates the magnitude of budgetary resources being earmarked for Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) and its composition in the Union and select state budgets. It attempts to assess the implementation of the guidelines of select Plan schemes of the Central government. The study covered the Union Budget and five State Budgets - Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. A thorough review was undertaken of the Union Budget and the detailed budget books at the state level, i.e., the Detailed Demands for Grants (DDGs) of the five states. The guidelines, budgetary resources and beneficiary data on SCs and STs of some selected Central government schemes were also examined.




In order to ensure direct “policy-driven” benefits for SCs and STs through specific interventions, the Planning Commission during the 1970s introduced plan strategies known as the Special Component Plan (SCP) and the Tribal Sub Plan (TSP). The earlier approach for development intervention for SCs and STs relied solely upon “incidental” benefits flowing to them from various interventions by the government. The main objective of SCP* and TSP was for channeling Plan funds for the development of SCs and STs in accordance with the proportion of these communities in the total population (16% and 8% respectively at the national level as of 2001). However, even though the SCSP and TSP have been operational for over 30 years, numerous problems exist in terms of the way they are being implemented:




  1. Plan allocation and release of plan funds by the Union Governments and in Rajasthan have not been made in proportion to the population of SCs and STs.
  2. In the allocations for SCP and TSP  ‘Notional’ allocations for SCP and TSP vary from 30% to 80% in states as well as in the Union budget. Notional allocations are mere paper figures that do not have flows/schemes directly benefitting SCs or STs.
  3. There exist serious anomalies between SCSP statements given by the Planning Commission/Departments at Union and State levels and the respective DDG (Detailed Demand for Grants) allocations in the Union and State Budgets passed by Parliament and Sate Assemblies. 
  4. The plan allocation by various line departments meant for SCs and SCs does not have the enough scope for tailor made projects and Schemes suitable to their specific needs. Most of the current schemes are for survival, and not for development or empowerment . No focus on entrepreneurship, employment and skill development projects.
  5. There remain critical administrative bottlenecks in implementation of the development programmes/schemes. Sufficient administrative, executive and accountability mechanism meant SCs and STs are not in place in States and districts. Budgetary norms are not being followed appropriately.
  6. There has been poor utilisation of the allocated funds for the welfare of SCs and STs.
  7. Funds meant for SCSP and TSP funds have been diverted to other sectors and purposes.
  8. Lack of transparency in many state budget in terms of accessing public information on SCs and STs , many State budgets do not publish summary statement on SCSP/TSP
  9. Poor service delivery mechanisms in the field level also constrain attainment of development outcomes.




Findings from the Analysis of the Union Budget




The analysis of the Union Budgets using Statements 21 and 21A and the Detailed Demands for Grants (DDGs) reveal several gaps in the implementation of SCSP and TSP. A look at Statement 21 from 2004-05 to 2010-11 shows that the aggregated plan allocation for SCs and STs varies from 7 to 11 percent for the combined population of SCs and STs, which was 24 percent of the total population. Statements 21 and 21 A in the Union Budget 2011-12 highlights the percentage share of allocations for SCSP and TSP to be 9 percent and 5 percent of the total plan allocation (as the table-1 shows the estimates that are far short of the recommended allocations by the Jadhav Task Force, 2010).




Table-1: Status of plan fund Allocation under SCSP and TSP in the Union Budget









A. Total Plan Allocation earmarked for SCs(in




B. Total Plan Allocation earmarked for STs (in Rs. Crore)




C. Total Plan Allocation of Union Govt.  (excluding Central Assistance to State & UT Plans) (in Rs Crore)




A as % of C




B as % of C





Source: Compiled by CBGA from Statement 21, Expenditure Budget of Vol-1 of Union Budget, 2011-12


* The Statement 21A shows Rs. 17371.35 crore as total plan allocation for STs While summing up all 27 entries from ministries and department in the above mentioned table we find Rs. 18,436.15 crore, so there is a difference of Rs 1064.8 crore. 




The combined plan allocations for SCs and STs from an analysis of the DDGs are as low as 2.54 percent in 2008-09 (Budget Estimates), 2.36 percent in 2009-10 (BE) and 2.45 percent in 2010-11 (BE). Budgetary allocation for SCs as a proportion of the total plan allocation is found to be as low as 1.10 percent (2008-09), 0.84 percent (2009-10) and 1.28 percent (2010-11) for the reference periods. Similarly, budgetary allocations for STs range between 1.25 percent and 1.4 percent as a proportion of the total plan allocation.




The DDGs reveal that the Union Ministries of Social Justice and Empowerment and Tribal Affairs contribute a sizeable amount of funds that are allocated for the SCs and STs. Apart from these two ministries, there are some other ministries like Labour and Employment; Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME); Home Affairs (Chandigarh, Andaman & Nicobar Islands and Daman & Diu); and Food and Public Distribution that have allocated the funds.




The setting up of the Narendra Jadhav Task Force in 2010 and the recommendations given by it are progressive steps that reflect a sense of urgency on the part of the government to address the deficits like separate budget statement for SCs and STs, opening the minor heads and targeting the Central plan Assistance (CPA) for welfare of SC and STs. Recommendation for a Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources for SCs and another for STs is very helpful. There is a concern in classifying the 43 ministries/departments in a non obligatory category under SCSP and TSP.




The scrutiny of the non-obligatory 43 ministries/departments for 2010-11 reveals that not all of them are regulatory departments/ministries. There is enough scope to create some exclusive schemes for development of SCs and STs. Besides, the percentage share of allocation determined by the task force under SCSP and TSP under three remaining categories, as mentioned above, is not adequate to address the given development deficit of SCs and STs. Ministries like MSME, Commerce, Information Technology and Science and Technology falling under category II, have been directed to allocate less than 15 percent of the total fund under SCSP and TSP which are critical for long term development of SCs and ST.




In Union Budget 2011-12, the government introduced two separate budget statements - Statement 21 that specifically catered to SCs, and Statement 21A for STs. Allocations were thus made under separate Minor Heads (789 and 796) for 25 Central ministries and departments. However, the study finds that the total quantum of allocations as shown in Statement 21 & 21A do not match the corresponding outlays from the DDGs. The outlays for SCs and STs work out much less as per the analysis of the DDGs.




Further, from the analysis of six schemes/interventions, it is found that three of these (Indira Awaas Yojana, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and UGC) have attempted to address the concerns of the SCs and STs through their scheme design, but still they lack clarity in their norms/guidelines in physical targeting and financial allocation under each component. Recently, the two programmes (NRHM and ICDS) have made some changes in their scheme design to cover the need of SCs and STs. Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) has no policy provision to address the development deficits of SCs and STs in urban areas.  Also, schemes like National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) do not provide data on SC and ST beneficiaries.




Findings from the Analysis of the State Budgets




An assessment of the Annual Plans of the study states for 2009-10 and 2010-11 reveals that there are serious anomalies in the figures given by the Planning Commission and the State Planning Departments in the five states (Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Odisha Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh). As per the Planning Departments, Bihar, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh have allocated the funds as stipulated by the SCSP guidelines for the same year. (see table 2), where as Rajasthan has not set aside funds for SCs in proportion to the SC population in 2010-11.




The estimates of fund allocations for the SCs based on an analysis of the DDGs vary widely across these five states. In Bihar, SCs were allocated 1.2% in 2007-08(AE), 1.1% in 2009-10 (RE) and 1.2% in 2010-11 (BE). In the case of Rajasthan, the plan fund varies from 3 to 4 percent for SCs for the same time period. The analysis of the department and scheme-wise allocations highlight many instances of fund diversion and misappropriation of funds that were earmarked for SCs. Fund allocations for STs in Odisha and Uttar Pradesh, as reported by the Annual Plan and the DDGs, are comparable. However, for Bihar and Rajasthan, the amounts mentioned in the Annual Plan and the DDGs vary significantly




Table-2: Variation between Planning Committee figures and DDGs figures for SCP in States





2009-10 BE

2010-11 BE

SCP State Plan (Planning Committee)

SCP  as per DDGs

SCP State Plan (Planning Committee)

SCP  as per DDGs


Rs. Cr.


Rs. Cr.


Rs. Cr.


Rs. Cr.


















































Source: Calculated and complied from the State Budgets of several states




In addition to the above there has been poor utilisation of funds due to poor absorption history in the states. It is not that there is lack of capacity, but more there is lack of ‘real policy concern’ to ensure the policy and guidelines are effectively implemented. An assessment of the implementation approaches under TSP reveals that Integrated Tribal Development Projects (ITDP/ITDA) are not functional due to several reasons such as lack of adequate and trained staff, poor planning processes, inadequate office infrastructure and basic facilities for staff. In many states, project officers at ITDP do not have sufficient work experience.








Taking into account the major gaps in implementation of SCSP and TSP, much more concerted efforts are required by the government to strengthen the implementation of SCSP and TSP. Some broad recommendations that emerge based on the analysis are summed up as follows:




              I.      An independent Authority/Commission with PM as the Chair to be created for the Progression of SC and STs with necessary administrative, executive and accountability mechanisms till district level be instituted:  In order for the SCSP and TSP to have the necessary priority in implementation, the Union and State governments may consider bring an act which ensures clear policy guidelines, executive and administrative mechanisms and resource allocation with accountability measures on the lines of NAREGA.


            II.      Finance Ministries in consultation with the Planning Commission and the Concerned ministries, at the Union and State levels to be made accountable for the allocation to SCSP and TSP as per the guidelines.


         III.      Non-Lapsable Central Pool of Resources for SCs and STs to created and all the unspent amounts to be transferred accordingly (Jadhav Committee Recommendation)


          IV.      Funds exclusively meant for the welfare of SCs and STs should not be used for other purposes/sectors. Several instances have been found from some of the states wherein SCSP and TSP funds have allegedly been diverted for other purposes such as expenditure on the Commonwealth Games 2010; construction of roads, bridges, stadiums, buildings and other State-owned assets like hospitals, flyovers and engineering colleges.;




            V.      The line ministries and departments of the Union and State governments that have not allocated the earmarked funds for SCSP and TSP so far must do so by introducing special/exclusive projects. There are around 43 Union ministries and departments which have not allocated funds for SCs and STs Due to their nature of engagement either as regulator, their primary role of policy making, or being responsible for creating infrastructure. 




          VI.      Without corresponding schemes no allocation to be made for SCSP or TSP.  Many departments and ministries have made notional allocations without schemes beniftting the SCs and STs.  The ‘general sector’ schemes should revise their norms and guidelines for creating special provisions and tailor made projects for the development of SCs and STs. Several of the major development schemes of the Union government have no clear mechanism to earmark funds for SCs or STs. Nor do they have the required data on the proportion of SCs and STs among their beneficiaries. Funds allocated for SCs and STs are either spent through the ‘exclusive’ schemes, wherein 100 percent of the outlays are meant for SCs and STs, or through ‘general sector’ schemes. The plan allocation by various line departments meant for SCs and SCs does not have the enough scope for tailor made project suitable to their specific need. Most of the schemes are rendering the social services, have very less focus on entrepreneurship and skill development. The general sector schemes (like SSA, schemes in higher education, ICDS, NRHM and JNNURM) do not have much clarity in their norms and guidelines about the specific provisions for SCs and STs. Scheme guidelines of IAY, that stipulate providing at least 40 percent of the total outlays for SCs and 20 percent of the allocation for STs, are worth emulating. Likewise, the guidelines of Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY), which focuses on creating livelihood, seeks to ensure that SCs and STs would account for at least 50% of the assisted beneficiaries.




       VII.      Comparable beneficiary-disaggregated data on SCs and STs for each scheme must be provided as against the data on the scheme outlays. A few schemes present beneficiary data in their reporting format. While ICDS and NRHM report fund allocations under minor heads, the supporting data on beneficiaries is not provided. Further, important documents of Union ministries like Annual Reports, Outcome Budgets and Results Framework Documents (RFD) are not providing adequate information about the priority for SCs and STs in terms of physical targets and financial allocations.




     VIII.      Central Plan Assistance (CPA) for states should allocate funds for SCs and STs with proper revision in the norms and guidelines.  Apart from the Centrally Sponsored Schemes and Central Sector Schemes, a substantial amount of funds goes through the Central Plan Assistance (CPA) to states without outlining any physical and financial provisions for SCs and STs. Schemes like Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY), Backward Regions Grant Fund (BRGF), JNNURM and Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) are not allocating funds for SCs and STs.












*The name Special Component Plan for SCs (SCP) was changed to Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) in 2006. Activists are of the opinion that segregating a small chunk of the total funds for the welfare of the SCs into a Sub Plan is extremely objectionable as it effectively pushes the concerns of the SCs to the very margins of government policy. However, for the sake of uniformity in the analysis and the presentation of the study findings, we will be using Scheduled Caste Sub Plan SCSP henceforth in the report.


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