With an eye on general elections, the Centre would increase allocation for the flagship programmes by Rs 38,000 crore in the next financial year, the vote of account to be introduced in Lok Sabha on February 16. Such a huge jump would mean no substantial increase in funds for other Central government schemes.
Allocation for ministries like Telecom, Information and Broadcasting, Petroleum, Coal and Mines and Textiles would be same as it was for the financial year 2008-09. This has already resulted in resentment among these ministries, a government official, who did not want to be named, said.
But the government has set its priorities clear. “Through vote on account, the government wants to send a message of its continued commitment for development of essential social sectors like education and health,” said a top planning commission official, who was not willing to be named.
Apart from the social sector, the Centre is expected to increase allocation of the state governments by 10 per cent from Rs 58,000 crore for the current financial year.