Child Rights NGOs Urge Govt to Increase Budget for Children Welfare Schemes
Child Rights and You (CRY) highlighted areas which require focus and investment and said there is a gap of about 26% in the proposed and the allocated budget for three subsumed school education schemes.
New Delhi: NGOs working to protect child rights have urged the Union government to increase the outlay in the Budget towards the welfare of children, asking it to focus on their safety and prioritise the deprived children in urban areas.
Child Rights and You (CRY) highlighted areas which require focus and investment. It said there is a gap of about 26 per cent in the proposed and the allocated budget for three subsumed school education schemes Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), the Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) and Teacher's Education under the Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan.
The budget outlay for the new scheme will be Rs 34,000 crore in 2018-19, which is even less than what was being demanded for SSA in 2018-19, it said.
"Child safety and protection has always been one of the difficult areas and to change resource allocation are key factors towards building a safer India," CRY said in a statement, two days before the Union Budget is presented.
Another child rights NGO, Save the Children, drew the attention of the government towards urban deprived children — the children of rag pickers, beggars, slum dwellers and sex workers who have been 'invisible' for years.
It said in most states, the fall in the share of child expenditure is higher than the fall in the share of social sector expenditure.
The NGO said the share of expenditure on social services in total expenditure has declined from 37.76 per cent in 2013-14 to 37.16 per cent in 2016-17.
"Similarly, when it comes to prioritising children, 14 general category states and seven special category states have declining shares. In most states, the fall in the share of child expenditure is higher than the fall in the share of social sector expenditure. Further, poor expenditure versus allocations of some key flagship programmes like the National Health Mission indicates the system needs strengthened structure," said Alka Singh, head of advocacy of Save the Children.
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