New Delhi: The Union Minority Affairs Ministry has received Rs 3,827.25 crore in the 2016-17 general budget, a rise of Rs 89.25 crore over the previous fiscal.
Union Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptulla called it as a “big leap” and said her ministry will now focus on implementing welfare schemes for the communities more effectively.
Presenting the budget on Monday, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley allocated Rs 3,827.25 crore to the Minority Affairs Ministry, of which Rs 3,800 crore has been earmarked under the plan head head and the rest Rs 27.25 crore under the non-plan head.
“The schemes for welfare and skill development of minorities such as multi-sectoral development programme and USTAAD shall be implemented effectively,” Jaitley said during his speech in Parliament.
In its third budget, the current NDA government has allotted Rs 1,245 crore for implementing umbrella schemes for development of minorities including Rs 1,125 crore meant for multi-sectoral development programme (MSDP).
The Centre has set aside Rs 1,949 crore for the educational empowerment of six minority communities — Muslims, Buddhists, Jains, Parsis, Sikhs and Christians.
For the purpose of implementing skill development programmes like ‘Seekho aur Kamao’, Upgrading Skills and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Develo-pment and ‘Nai Manzil’ and Integrated Educa-tional and Livelihood Initiative (‘New Scheme’), Jaitley has allotted Rs 385 crore. “I am very happy with the budget because we got (nearly) Rs 100 crores extra. I think overall, the budget is very progressive. Budget is development-oriented and focuses on social sector.
“I think there is a big leap. We have used 98 per cent money (during 2015-16). I want to revamp the MSDP programme. I want to make it more comprehensive and effective and (ensure) the benefits go to the right people,” the Minister said.
Heptulla said the minorities will also benefit also from other schemes like those for affordable housing, healthcare and Bima Yojana....