CM of A.P. Mr. N. Kiran Kumar Reddy has made an attempt to gain the favour of Minorities by allocating Rs. 1020 crore in the next year’s budget.
Mr. N. Kiran Kumar Reddy personally instructed the officials of Finance Department for this enhancement. He informed the Congress High Command about this increase. He assured the Central Congress leaders that this would certainly benefit the Congress party during the next elections.
It is learnt from reliable sources that in the meeting of the officials of the Dept. of Finance, it was agreed to enhance Minorities budget upto Rs. 1000 crore but while finalizing it, the amount went upto Rs. 1020 crore. This would be the largest budget for Minorities allocated so far.
When the Dept. of Minorities Welfare was asked to submit budget proposals for the year 2013-14 it suggested an amount of Rs. 1480. The officials of the Dept. of Finance pointed out certain lacunae in this allocation and finally it was agreed upon to allocate Rs. 1020 in the budget for Minorities.
It may be noted that the budget for Minorities was Rs. 489 crore last year. Since the office of Commissioner for Minorities Welfare has been established in Hyderabad and its branches in the districts, the need to allocate more funds was warranted.
A sum of Rs. 12.20 crore is allocated for Christians for their pilgrimage to Jerusalem. The contribution of State Govt. for Central Govt. scholarships has been increased from Rs. 40 crore to Rs. 70 crore.
Last year Rs. 96 crore were allocated for Postmatric Scholarships which have now been enhanced to Rs. 300 crore in the next budget.
There is a proposal of enhancing the budget for fees reimbursement scheme from Rs. 220 crore to Rs. 320 crore next year.
The budget for the construction of residential Girls’ schools for Minorities has been enhanced from Rs. 55 lakh to Rs. 60 lakh. There is a proposal to increase mess charges also.
The budget allocation for performing marriages of destitute girls belonging to Muslims, Christians, Parsis and Sikhs has been increased from Rs. 1.20 crore to Rs. 5 crore. The subsidies of Minorities Finance Corporation would be increased from Rs. 25 crore to Rs. 118 crore.
The limit for the grant of loans to Minority candidates has been increased to Rs. 2 lakh. Apprehensions are being made about the release of the fourth installment of the budget allocated this year for Minorities which has not yet been released.
The officials of the Dept. of Finance say that officers of the Dept of Minorities Welfare have not furnished the details of the amounts spent in the third quarter of the financial year.
It is reported that the budget allocated for fees reimbursement and scholarships has not yet been spent so far. The amounts allocated for other schemes have also not been utilized. These are the obstacles in the release of the fourth installment of the allotted budget.
When a representation was made to the officials of the Dept. of Finance, they pointed out certain lapses. The staff of Minorities Welfare Dept. is busy in rectifying those mistakes. In the preparation of budget proposals for Christian Finance Corporation, there were some mistakes. If these mistakes are not rectified, the release of the fourth installment of the budget would be uncertain.
If this is the state of affairs in the implementation of the schemes, will it be possible for the Dept. of Minorities Welfare to spend Rs. 1000 crore next year?