Hyderabad, February 1: Former Minister & ex-Leader of Opposition in Telangana Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir has strongly condemned the BJP Government for not increasing the overall allocations for the minority welfare in the Union Budget 2022-23.
In his reaction to the Union Budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the Parliament on Tuesday, Shabbir Ali said that the allocations for Minority Affairs have been reduced to 2020-21 level. He said an amount of Rs. 5,020.50 Crore has been allocated for the year 2022-23. While this Rs. 674.50 crore more than the revised figures of Rs. 4.346.45 crore in 2021-22, it is less than the allocation of Rs. 5,029 crore made in 2020-21. Therefore, the slogan of Prime Minister Narendra Modi of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas aur Sabka Vishwas’ has once again proved hollow.
Shabbir Ali said that the Central Govt had spent about Rs. 37.70 Lakh crore in 2021-22 and it proposes to spend Rs. 39.45 Lakh Crore in the next financial year. Instead of increasing the allocations for the welfare of minorities on par with expenditure on other schemes, the BJP Govt has completely neglected the minorities in the union budget. “Modi Govt wants to implement welfare schemes for nearly 26 crore people (or 19.4% of minorities) across the country with an amount of just Rs. 5,020.50 Crore. This will come to average spending of about Rs. 193 per person per year belonging to the minority community,” he said.
Shabbir Ali said that the allocation for Skill Development Initiatives has been reduced from Rs. 276 Crore in 2021-22 to Rs. 235.41 Crore in 2022-23. Similarly, he said funding for the Nai Manzil – the Integrated Educational and Livelihood Initiative has been reduced from Rs. 87 Crore in 2021-22 to Rs. 46 crore in 2022-23. Likewise, he said allocations have been reduced for the Scheme for Leadership Development of Minority Women.
The Congress leader said that the overall allocations for the Skill Development and Livelihoods have been reduced from Rs. 573 crore in 2021-22 to just Rs. 491.91 Crore in 2022-23.
Shabbir Ali strongly condemned the BJP Govt for stopping the funds for Moulana Azad Education Foundation. He said Rs. 70.92 Crore was allocated for MAEF in 2020-21. This was first increased to Rs. 90 Crore in 2021-22, but later it was revised to Rs. 76 Crore. For the year 2022-23, the funding has been completely stopped and only Rs. 1 lakh has been earmarked for the same.
The Congress leader said that the BJP Govt should change its approach towards the welfare of minorities. He said that the minorities could not gain educational and economic growth through hollow slogans. The Central and State Governments need to allocate adequate funds and ensure their 100% spending to achieve the set targets. He said that the budget presented by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman was highly disappointing for the minorities.