Thousands of Dalit Adivasi students walked the roads of Delhi, demanding SCP TSP Legislation
9th December 2013
New Delhi: Thousands of Dalit adivasi students walked the roads of Delhi, demanding for legislation of Special Component Plan and Tribal Sub plan, today, 9th December 2013. The Dalit- Adivasi Students’ Parliament was organised by Shiksha Vikas Adhikar (SVADHIK) as part of campaign led by National Coalition for SCP TSP legislation.
Students from Uttar Pradesh, Odhisa, Andra Pradesh, Karnataka, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat spoke about the mismanagement and delay of scholarships. Girl students spoke especially about the poor hostel conditions. Mr. D.Raja (MP, CPI) pledged his support to the demand for legislation of SCP/TSP law.
He urged the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, from the platform of Students’ Parliament to bring the SCP/TSP legislation in the Central Government. Ms. Annie Namala (CSEI) spoke about the poor condition of students’ scholarships, midday meals and overseas scholarship. Nikhil Dey (Pension Parishad & MKSS) also extended his support to the students’ Charter of Demands.
It has been observed that government gives excuses of lack of resources in case of Dalit/Adivasi educational development issues. However, in reality their share in budget has never been allocated. The analysis of last five years budget indicates that Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) has never received allocation beyond 8.1% which in reality should be 16%. Similarly under Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) 8% of budget should be allocate, when it is presently only around 4.5%.
The funds of Rs. 95266 Cr, which was supposed to be allocated for the development of Dalit community, has been diverted. Likewise, the amount of Rs. 43709 allocated for the development of Adivasi communities has not reached them too. It is shameful that even after 65 years of independence the discrimination, violation of rights of Dalit and Adivasi communities is rampant across the country. If we look at the educational budget allocated for Dalit/Adivasi communities, then the Ministry for Human Resource Development has received Rs. 18896.41 under SCSP/TSP, which is comparatively more than other ministries. However, it very unfortunate that only 5% of this allocated budgeted is spent on the scholarships that are directly beneficial for Dalit Adivasi students. Rest of the money is spent under the head of general allocation and asset building. For instance, in 2011-12 the U.G.C. spent only Rs. 63.36 Cr. on educational schemes for Dalit students out of Rs.780 Cr. allocated from SCP.
Similarly, under TSP only Rs.24.03 Cr. was spent on educational schemes for Adivasi students, out of Rs. 386.11 Cr. allocated to UGC. Under the present 2013-14 SCP allocation to MHRD, only Rs. 60 Cr. out of Rs. 2431.51 Cr. has been spent upon the scholarships for Dalit students. Under the TSP, the amount of Rs. 1219.59 Cr has been released for Higher Education but a mere sum of Rs. 30 Cr.
It is most unfortunate that most of the funds from SCP/TSP are spent on general allocations like constructions of public halls, asset building, salaries of government employees, etc. The scholarships of Adivasi students are not released for years together on the excuse of lack of funds. It is very common to see that the teachers in Adivasi, belts stop to teach the Adivasi children under the pretext that they have not received their salaries. The students requested the Government that the funds from SCP and TSP should be used for Dalit and Adivasi development, not for building jails and police stations, and placed their Charter of Demands with the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh.
Under the banner of National Coalition on SCP–TSP Legislation (NACSTL) as part of the campaign for Dalit and Adivasi Economic Rights, a weeklong protest was launched on 5th December and will end on 10th December on the occasion of International Human Rights Day demanding a central legislation during ongoing winter session of the parliament. The coalition comprises of more than 300 Dalit and Adivasi organizations from across country.
Girish Chandra Pant
Mo No : +919795462339
On behalf of
Dalits Media Watch Team
(An initiative of “Peoples Media Advocacy & Resource Centre-PMARC”)