The Centre for Dalit Studies has expressed its dismay over the lacklustre way in which the state government is going about implementing the SC and ST sub-plan which was made an Act on January 24 last year.
Though it has nearly been a year since the sub-plan Act came into existence, none of the socio-economic benefits promised in the sub-plan reached the intended sections, CDS director M Anjaneyulu has said.
In a press release issued here on Sunday, he explained that there had been no progress on issuance of loans through the SC Corporation. “Not a single cent of land has been procured under the Land Procurement Scheme under the sub-plan, leave alone giving it to the beneficiaries. The promise of the state government to bear the expenditure for the overseas studies of SC and ST students still remains unfulfilled and several have been left disappointed,” he alleged.
The CDS director said that though a state-level council was set up to sanction various schemes under the SC/ST sub-plan, no representative from those communities had been nominated to the council so far. “The state government had sanctioned Rs 12,251 crore for SC/ST sub-plan for the current fiscal and as on January 14, 2014, only Rs 4,204 crore has been spent. The question is how the government plans to spend the remaining amount of the sub-plan (Rs 8,047 crore), given that hardly 70 days are left in the current fiscal.’’
Anjaneyulu alleged that against the spirit and objective of the sub-plan, the funds were being utilised for the sectors which had no relation with the development and welfare of Dalits and Adivasis, and wondered how such an implementation of the sub-plan would ensure an equal status for them with others in the society. ‘’It is high time the state government woke up to the reality and implemented the SC/ST sub-plan in right spirit,’’ he said.
The government should take up programmes meant for the development and welfare of Dalits and Adivasis and release necessary funds under the sub-plan should be released for the purpose. Further, it should liberalise the procedure of sanctioning loans to those communities.
More important, drinking water, houses, roads, drainage, land, Anganwadi centres, community halls, street lights and health centres in villages should be ensured for Dalits. Unemployed Dalits should be imparted training in necessary job skills and finance any self- employment opportunities for them.
Homeless Dalits should be provided with 10 cents of lands each and the government should bear the cost of the construction of houses for them. Land should be provided for Dalits in villages wherever there were no burial grounds for them, the CDS demanded and urged the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe legislators and ministers to bring pressure on the government for the purpose.