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NEW DELHI: Slamming the government for minimal spending on children, a new study by child rights NGO `Haq: Centre for Child Rights' says that while the total budget allocation has gone up by 40%, the actual spending on children has gone up only by 21.6%.
Haq conducted an analysis of the Union Budget to identify allocations for children. The study found that children — who constitute 42% of the population — continue to be neglected. On an average, children received only 4.45 paise out of every hundred rupees allocated in the budget from 2004-05 to 2008-09.
Significantly, the budget for children has increased by less than 3% in the previous decade, despite huge allocations in education for Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and the Integrated Child Development Scheme.
The study shows that of every Rs 100 allocated from the Union Budget, education programmes get Rs 2.90, health and development programmes less than Re 1 each, while protection programmes get only five paise.
A statement issued by Haq said that this reflected the weak commitment of the government on children's issues. The study also criticises the low spending remarking that the small allocations are also not being spent. In terms of actual spending, children's share in the Union Budget came down further to 4.12 paise.
So while the budget allocation for children went up by 40% from Rs 21,032.84 crore in 2005-06 to Rs 29,518.55 crore in 2006-07, the actual spending was only 21.65% more — from Rs 22,875.27 crore to Rs 27,827.87 crore.