//Separate and exclusive budget for SC/STs sought

Separate and exclusive budget for SC/STs sought

Coimbatore: A seminar being organised by the National Dalit Brotherhood Association in Delhi on February 10 will demand that the Centre allocate 22.5 per cent of the Central budget for the welfare of SC/ST population in India.

The one-day seminar, to be attended by 150 representatives from different organisations, including experts from economic and social fields, would formulate ‘separate and exclusive proposals,’ for SC/STs, Dr K Krishnasamy, founder president of Puthiya Tamizhakam, a Dalit political party in Tamil Nadu and the organiser, told reporters here today.

The association has sought an audience with union finance minister, P Chidambaram, to submit the proposals and to be included in the budget, since only 1.25 per cent of the total budget was being allocated for SC/STs under the Social Welfare  ministry Krishnasamy said.

There was no other allocation to the SC/STs under any special component plans, he claimed.

Claiming that the demand was just as the SC/ST population was 22.5 per cent of India, he said that if the government failed to heed to the demand of announcing a ‘separate budget for SC/STs,’ the association would form a National movement and agitate till the goal was achieved. The seminar, to be chaired by R S Gawai, chairman of SC/ST MPs forum, would be attended by leaders like Ramdas Athwale, Suraj Bhan, Chairman, National SC Commission and Yogendra Makwana, Krishnasamy said.