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HC directs Delhi to reply to plea on funds meant for scheduled castes

The plea sought to ensure that the unspent funds that have been diverted in the last three years are reverted to the SCSP and are used for special schemes set up for the welfare of the Scheduled Caste

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Delhi High Court | Delhi government

IANS  |  New Delhi 

Delhi HC
Delhi High Court

The on Tuesday sought the response of the on a plea seeking directions to spend the entire welfare amount allocated for the Scheduled Caste Sub-Plan (SCSP) under the Budget for the current and future financial years.

A bench comprising Justices D.N. Patel and Jyoti Singh issued notice to all the respondents, including the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, in the matter. The court will hear the matter in detail on January 11, 2022.

The plea sought to ensure that the unspent funds that have been diverted in the last three years are reverted to the SCSP and are used for special schemes set up for the welfare of the Scheduled Castes.

In this regard, the petition sought directions from the Delhi government, the Department for the Welfare of SC/ST/OBC, Delhi Scheduled Castes Financial and Development Corporation (DSFDC), and the Planning Department.

Petitioner Harnam Singh, a social activist and former Chairman of Delhi Commission for Safai Karamcharis, through advocates Mehmood Pracha and Jatin Bhatt alleged that the statistics of the show that only 17.92 per cent of the budget outlay has been spent on the welfare of SC/ST/OBC/minorities in the 2020-21 financial year.

As per the Delhi government, the population of Scheduled Castes in Delhi is 16.9 per cent. Therefore, the expenditure mandated for the welfare of the Scheduled Castes under SCSP ought to have been a minimum of 16.9 per cent of the budget outlay, the plea contended.

The SCSP introduced as part of the sixth five-year plan (1980-1985) envisages channelising a minimum flow of the outlays and benefits from all sectors of development in the annual plans of states/UTs and Central ministries in proportion to the Scheduled Caste population of the concerned state/UT.

The state/UT budget outlays are approved by the Union of India only if they contain a provision for allocation of funds for the SCSP.

A bare perusal of the data published in the Economic Survey and the data provided to the petitioner under the RTI Act shows that the budget allocated for SCSP is grossly underutilised, the plea noted.

--IANS

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(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Wed, November 10 2021. 11:27 IST
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