The programme on Budget: Review and Implementation was organized in the auditorium of Bihar Industries Association on March 27, 2009. It was jointly organized by VSSSESS, NCDHR, Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Voluntary Forum for Education, Action Aid, PRAXIS, Bihar Tribal Rights Unity Forum, Dalit Adhikar Manch, Wada Na Todo Abhiyan (
Pramod Kumar Singh, the Director of VSSSESS opened the session by introducing the guests and the issues to be discussed from the forum. He said that since long injustice has been done with
Ali Anwar, Member of Parliament, said that high value ideology no longer figure in the election manifestoes of the political parties. Mostly they revolve around emotional issues.
Concept of welfare state has been gradually weakening. Voices are being raised against subsidy. External as well as internal pressure are being exerted for the removal of the welfare schemes in the name of fiscal prudence.
Paul Diwakar, National Convenor of NCDHR presented strongly the case in favour of SCSP. He vehemently criticized the fund misutilization allocated for the Dalits under the SCSP. He presented his speech in English and to bring his message to the audience (which mostly consisted of the representatives of the NGOs based in the rural areas, apart from the intellectuals and the political leaders), Prof Daisy Narayan from Voluntary Forum for Education, translated his speech in Hindi. He said that so far Rs 19400 crores has been denied to the Dalits in
There is need to form credible movement to demand our budget rights. Until and unless critical elements of poverty and caste based discrimination are abolished, we can’t hope for better.
There are many sectors which are driving the economy of nation like energy, construction, information technology etc. but the representation of the Dalits in these sectors is almost negligible.
He further said that capitalist development will take care of everything. This thinking has become pervaded in the capitalist as well as the socialist countries. But this has not happened. Recession has proved all this theory wrong.
There is great disparity in the issues related to the privileged and the deprived sections in
He further said that most people lack access to the means necessary for the progress in life. Caste based discrimination is on the increase. He cited examples in support of his proposition from the budgetary allocations.
He particularly emphasised the point that only talk of SCP is not enough, rather there is need to launch an awareness campaign on this issue. Also there is the pressing need to change the attitude regarding the allocation for SCP.
Ashutosh Kumar Vishal, the National Coordinator, DA3 Project, NCDHR, made a power point presentation on SCSP. This proved very knowledgeable for the audience.
Mahendra Raushan said :We have been discussing since 11 am. The budget is not being prepared in the way in which it should have been prepared. This is some where related to the issue of injustice. We have to acknowledge that there are several reasons behind the issue of poverty. The critical issue is hunger. We talk of social security, medical and other facilities, but first of all we have to talk of hunger. We talk of budget allocation, but where this amount is going. We work in the village, where people are half fed, half clad. Their first priority is how to fill up their stomach. We are the producers, but we are exploited. We have the least expectation from the government that the life with dignity. In parliament 22889/- per minute in 2008, such big expenses. We see that the children are not going to the school. The money is not reaching in the villages, the budget is not being prepared according to the population, timely release of the money is lacking. Worse, the official apathy.
Since the budget is such a big issue, therefore, there should be a campaign to pressure the government, to make the people aware on the budget issue. How to raise the awareness of the people on the budget – this should be our priority issue. We need to take all the issue raised in this hall to the people in the rural areas. There should also be a declaration on the apart of the public along the line of the political parties.
We need to draw the attention of the political parties to this issue. We need to convert it into mass movement.
Bhola Prasad Singh suggested to make a separate meeting with the NGOs and the people concerned on all the issues concerned, so that we may reach on some conclusion. He also dwelt upon the problems in the wake of poor budgeting. He said that if the practice of good budgeting had been followed,
Gauri, AIDMAM said that she has checked the condition of the hostels, their condition is plight. The fund release for the books and food and other arrangements is really apathetic. I need to draw the attention of the people as well as government so that they may look into the grievances of the SC.
Nilachal Acharya raised a very pertinent question: What the importance the budgets hold for the economically and socially poor and disadvantaged sections in the state? In fact in order to make people aware about the importance of the budget in the lives of the common people, there is the need to launch awareness campaign.
The programme ended with the lunch in the evening.
After the programme was over, the press conference was organized in the hall of Rajasthan Hotel. The reporters from almost every leading newspaper were present in the hall for the coverage of the event.
State Coordinator, DA3,