Indian Budget 2010-11- Full Text- February 26, 2010
72. For the UPA Government, inclusive development is an act of faith. In the last five years, our Government has created entitlements backed by legal guarantees for an individual's right to information and her right to work. This has been followed-up with the enactment of the right to education in 2009-10. As the next step, we are now ready with the draft Food Security Bill which will be placed in the public domain very soon. To fulfil these commitments the spending on social sector has been gradually increased to Rs.1,37,674 crore which now stands at 37 per cent of the total plan outlay in 2010-11. Another 25 per cent of the plan allocations are devoted to the development of rural infrastructure. With growth and the opportunities that it generates, we hope to further strengthen the process of inclusive development.
73. The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 creates a framework for legal entitlements for all children in the age group of 6 to 14 years to education of good quality, based on principles of equity and
non-discrimination. In recent years, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) has made significant contribution in improving enrolment and infrastructure for elementary education. About 98 per cent of habitations are now covered by primary schools. I propose to increase the plan allocation for school education from Rs.26,800 crore in 2009-10 to Rs.31,036 crore in 2010-11. In addition, States will have access to Rs.3,675 crore for elementary education under the Thirteenth Finance Commission grants for 2010-11.
74. An Annual Health Survey to prepare the District Health Profile of all Districts shall be conducted in 2010-11. The findings of the Survey should be of immense benefit to major public health initiatives particularly the National Rural Health Mission, which has successfully addressed the gaps in the delivery of critical health services in rural areas.
75. I propose to increase the plan allocation for the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, from Rs.19,534 crore to Rs.22,300 crore for 2010-11.
76. To reach the benefits of banking services to the 'Aam Aadmi', the Reserve Bank of India had set up a High Level Committee on the Lead Bank Scheme. After careful assessment of the recommendations of this Committee, and in further consultation with the RBI, it has been decided to provide appropriate Banking facilities to habitations having population in excess of 2000 by March, 2012. It is also proposed to extend insurance and other services to the targeted beneficiaries. These services will be provided using the Business Correspondent and other models with appropriate technology back up. By this arrangement, it is proposed to cover 60,000 habitations.
Financial Inclusion Fund (FIF) and the Financial Inclusion Technology Fund
77. In 2007-08 the Government had set up a Financial Inclusion Fund and a Financial Inclusion Technology Fund in NABARD, to reach banking services to the unbanked areas. To give momentum to the pace of financial inclusion, I propose an augmentation of Rs.100 crore for each of these funds, which shall be contributed by Government of India, RBI and NABARD.
78. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi "Just as the universe is contained in the self, so is India contained in the villages". For UPA Government, development of rural infrastructure remains a high priority area. For the year 2010-11, I propose to provide Rs.66,100 crore for Rural Development.
79. Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme has completed four years of implementation during which it has been extended to all districts covering more than 4.5 crore households. The allocation for NREGA has been stepped up to Rs.40,100 crore in 2010-11. Bharat Nirman has made a substantial contribution to the upgradation of rural infrastructure through its various programmes. For the year 2010-11, I propose to allocate an amount of Rs.48,000 crore for these programmes.
80. Indira Awas Yojana is a popular rural housing scheme for weaker sections. Taking note of the increase in the cost of construction, I propose to raise the unit cost under this scheme to Rs.45,000 in the plain areas and to Rs.48,500 in the hilly areas. For the year 2010-11, the allocation for this scheme is being increased to Rs.10,000 crore.
81. As a part of the strategy to bridge the infrastructure gap in backward districts of the country, the Backward Region Grant Fund has proved to be an effective instrument. I propose to enhance the allocation to this fund by 26 per cent from Rs.5,800 crore in 2009-10 to Rs.7,300 crore in 2010-11. I have also provided an additional central assistance of Rs.1,200 crore for drought mitigation in the Bundelkhand region in the Budget.
Urban Development and Housing
82. "Swarna Jayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana" designed to provide employment opportunities in urban areas, has been strengthened with focus on community participation, skill development and self employment support structures. For the year 2010-11, I propose to increase the allocation for urban development by more than 75 per cent from Rs.3,060 crore to Rs.5,400 crore. In addition, the allocation for Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation is also being raised from Rs.850 crore to Rs.1,000 crore in 2010-11.
83. While presenting the Union Budget for the year 2009-10, I had announced a Scheme of one per cent interest subvention on housing loans up to Rs.10 lakhs where the cost of the house does not exceed Rs.20 lakhs. I propose to extend this Scheme up to March 31, 2011. Accordingly, I propose to provide a sum of Rs.700 crore for this Scheme for the year 2010-11.
84. The Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY) for slum dwellers and urban poor was announced last year to extend support to States that are willing to provide property rights to slum dwellers. This scheme is now ready to take off. I propose to allocate Rs.1,270 crore for 2010-11 as compared to Rs.150 crore last year. This marks an increase of over 700 per cent. The Government's efforts in the implementation of RAY would be to encourage the States to create a slum free India at the earliest.
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