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Bengal running welfare schemes effectively despite dip in funds: Minister

West Bengal Women and Child Development Minister Shashi Panja on Monday said in the Assembly that inadequate fund allocation by the Centre was affecting several welfare projects

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Press Trust of India Kolkata
West Bengal Women and Child Development Minister Shashi Panja on Monday said in the Assembly that inadequate fund allocation by the Centre was affecting several welfare projects, but the state, despite the constraints, had managed to run these effectively thus far.
Presenting a Budget of over Rs 19,238.42 crore for 2022-23 for the Women and Child Development department, she pointed out that the Union government has reduced allocation for autonomous bodies such as Central Adoption Resource Authority, National Commission for Protection of Child Rights and National Commission for Women.
Replying to BJP's accusations of neglect of women and children in Bengal, the minister said that the dip in allocation for the autonomous bodies goes on to show how much the Centre was concerned about their welfare. Panja said that change in fund sharing pattern between the Centre and the states had been affecting the projects.
She said that under 'Mission Vatsalya', which protects interest of minors, the Centre was bearing 60 per cent of the expenses and the state 40 per cent, while the sharing ratio earlier was 75 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.
The minister claimed that funds for betterment of basic infrastructure of anganwadi centres are yet to reach the state.
In her budget speech for her department, Panja said that the Centre's share for running 548 children's creches in West Bengal, for which it bears 60 per cent, the state 30 per cent and NGOs 10 per cent, were still awaited.
She noted that the Centre had so far given Rs 670 crore out of over Rs 2,100 crore promised to the state in the current financial year for running centres of Integrated Child Development Services.
Participating in the debate, BJP MLA from Dabgram Phulbari, Sikha Chatterjee, alleged that children and women are not being given proper prescribed food under the ICDS scheme.
She claimed that girls and women were being trafficked from the backward areas in the state, and urged the minister to keep an eye on child adoption centres, as "large sums of money were changing hands behind the scenes".
During the session, TMC MLA June Maliah said that more than 75 lakh girls in the state are beneficiaries of the 'Kanyashree' programme launched by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in 2013.
She said that the CM was also taking care of the needs of transgender people, providing them with education opportunities and jobs.

(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: Mar 21 2022 | 9:24 PM IST

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