NCDHR: Continued Violation of socio economic rights of SCs in Delhi Delhi Budget 2014-15 – Denial of Rs 2284.97 crore to SCs
24 July 2014, New Delhi: As the nation watched in shock television footage of a Shiv Sena MP forcing down food a fasting Muslim staffer at Maharashtra Sadan in New Delhi, it becomes all the more apparent that words but not action is the mantra of the Government for Dalits, Adivasis and minorities. Whether it is the state Government or the Central Government, there is no change when it comes to such communities as they continue to face social exclusion and discrimination. Legislations meant to protect the interests of Dalits and Adivasis are never implemented in letter and spirit.
Consider this: In the Delhi Budget 2014-15, presented by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in Parliament as the Union Territory is currently under the President's rule, the total entitlement for Dalits under the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) was reduced by Rs 2,284.97 crore. The SCSP mandates the setting apart of a proportion of the total Plan outlays of the central and state governments that is equivalent to the population proportion of SCs at the national and state level, for their development.
Now, of the Rs 36,776 crore Total Budget Estimate for FY2014-15,Rs 17,700.00 crore is the plan outlay. Under the SCSP what was supposed to have been allocated is Rs 2,994.84. But what actually was allocated is only Rs 709.87 crore. It is a denial of over 75 percent and the figure is a mere 4% of the Plan Outlay of the Delhi Expenditure Budget.
TABLE-1 (Rs. Crore)
(Source-Delhi NCT Expenditure Budget - Detailed Demands for Grants- 2014-15)
Recent events have shown that the current impasse of economic and social injustice continues unabated for Dalits and minorities in our country. “The budget shockingly points out a denial of Rs 2,284.97 crore to the SC community, who are languishing due to lack of adequate housing, water and sanitation, health as well as lack of employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, which are necessary to reduce the gross inequalities,” said Paul Divakar, General Secretary, National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR) - Dalit Arthik Adhikar Andolan (DAAA).
On further scrutiny of the quantum of actual expenditure for the FY 2012-13, we find 20 percent of the total allocation to the SCs has been unspent. The budget estimates for the FY 2012-13 was Rs 559 crore but only Rs 452 crore was spent, which means Rs 107 crore has lapsed, which is a gross violation of the SCSP guidelines. The denial is apparent when we scrutinize further. The total due amount under the SCSP in the last five years is Rs 12,574.61 crore which should have been allocated as per the SCP-TSP Guidelines but the total allocation has been only Rs 2,499.48 crore. (Refer bar chart below)
From the above table we observe that though the State’s Plan size is increasing, denied allocation of funds for SCs under the SCSP is also increasing. The state reiterates that good governance should be participatory, accountable, transparent, responsive, effective, efficient, and inclusive and based on rule of the law. But in the present scenario it is nothing more than lip service. Concerned departments for development of SCs such as urban development, education, housing, social welfare has seen minimal increase, while the health department has seen a decrease in the allocation for the current financial year.
For the FY 2014-15, only two new schemes have been launched,which have no significance as far as theeconomic empowerment of SCs is concerned.
- World Bank share (Under CSS and State Share) with allocation of Rs 18 lakhs.
- Loans to East Delhi Municipal Corporation for improvement of livestock market at Gazipur with an allocation of Rs 10 Cr.
Under the SCSP, total allocation for the gender budget is Rs 9.96 crore for nine schemes. Of the nine schemes, four schemes have no fund allocation. There are no schemes for women’s safety or socio-economic empowerment. Fund allocations towards women’s health has also been compromised.
It is unfortunate that for the 2014-15 budget estimate, of the 11 departments, only six departments have allocated funds for SC welfare. “Experience shows that even what is being allocated is not spent for the welfare of the Dalits,” added Divakar.
The government believes that sustainability has three components -efficiency, equity and ecology, but facts speak for themselves. The government needs to urgently constitute a committee to investigate into these massive discrepancies, allocate funds as per the SCP-TSP guidelines and plan schemes that bring direct development to the SCs in the National Capital Territory.
“The need of the hour is to ensure that the allocated funds are spent for the development of Dalits and not diverted for other general purposes. And, also, ensure that the funds are spent, they should not lapse,”concluded Divakar.
For more information:
Media and Communications Manager
National Campaign on Dalit Human Rights (NCDHR)
8/1 South Patel Nagar, 2nd Floor, New Delhi - 110 008
Mobile: +91 9650170077