Welfare Party of India described Union Budget 2023 as a Pre-Poll Budget, disappointing and excluding Minorities, Marginalized and the Poor.
Dr SQR Ilyas National President of Welfare Party of India said,” the Pre poll Union Budget, 2023 aimed to make superficial plastic surgery, but lacked path breaking bold initiatives that were badly needed to address the pressing problems of high unemployment, rising inequity and persisting inflation.
He said, “BJP government’s step motherly treatment towards minorities is quite evident in the budgetary allocation for the Ministry of Minority affairs was slashed by 38%.The major share in the decline was of pre-matric scholarship which fell from Rs 1425 crore in 2022-23 to Rs 433 crore in 2023-24.
The budgetary allocation for these minorities schemes that provided empowerment component were also slashed which included Post Metric scholarship,Merit Cum Means,Free coaching, Mowlana Azad fellow ship, USTAD scheme for Skill development, Nai Manzil and Scheme for Madrasa improvement and said if one section of the society is excluded than nation’s development is grossly impacted.
He said,”the Ministry of Health & Family Welfare received an allocation of Rs 89,155 crore in the Union budget 2023-24. This modest allocation towards the healthcare sector leaves India’s GDP on healthcare well below the world average and other developing and developed nations”.
He said, “the Budget 2023 has reduced the allocation for MGNREGA – the UPA government’s flagship scheme which provided employment to the unorganised rural sector, from Rs 89,400 crore to Rs.60,000 crore,the slash in the budgetary allocation even as the rural employment rate stood at 6.5% on 31st January 2023 is very unfortunate.
He said,” the budgetary announcements made by FM for the MSME sector are not enough, for the sector which is battling existential issues with the rising prices on raw materials, power tariff hikes, heavy taxation and poor basic infrastructure, the credit guarantee scheme announced by FM for MSME with an outlay of Rs 9000 crore announced in this budget is insufficient and said the actual need for MSME to kickstart is providing liquid cash.
He said, “the agriculture sector was ignored in Union Budget 2023-24, even the flagship government schemes received alacklustre allocation.Market Intervention Scheme, PM-AASHA Yojana that ensure minimum support price-based procurement operations in the country was slashed from Rs 1 crore to Rs 1lakh”. .MIS-PSS was virtually ignored as its allocation got reduced from Rs 1,500 crore to Rs 1 lakh, almost a 100 per cent cut.
Dr Ilyas said,” Budget is a financial statement to ensure that there is equitable distribution of the resources and no one is left behind in the path of development and pointed out at the Oxfam report which states that 1% in India are enjoying 40% of the nation’s wealth which is cruel and unfair and demanded wealth tax to be imposed on the super rich to check the growing disparity between the rich and the poor.