Leading non-government organisations urged the government on Tuesday to reverse the 2015/16 Budget’s steep cut in funding for children, saying it would hurt programmes to lift health and education facilities for them.
The Centre cut the allocation for children by 29% in the Budget, leaving them with just 3% of the plan expenditure, which NGOs said was one of the highest cuts in funds for children in the recent past.
“The future of Indian children remains bleak,” 10 civil society organisations said in a joint statement.
The budget allocation of the HRD ministry has been cut by 17%, that of women and child development ministry by 51% and ministry of family and health welfare by 13%.
Among schemes, the one for prevention of alcoholism and substance drugs have been cut by 67%, a statement issued by child right activists said.
Dr Vandana Prasad, former member of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), said the budgetary cuts would hamper the fight against malnutrition in India, which has the highest number of malnourished children in the world.
Prasad also added that the budget cuts would also mean that a Supreme Court order on universalising the ICDS will not be implemented in the near future.