Scheduled Caste Sub Plan
The Scheduled Caste Sub Plan, is previously named as Special Component Plan, concept was first introduced during the Sixth Plan to channelise the flow of benefits and outlays in physical and financial terms from the general sectors in the Plans of the States/Union Territories for development of SCs. These plans are envisaged to help the poor SC families through composite income generating/welfare schemes. The system has evolved a useful mechanism to draw funds and physical benefits in various sectors for improving the socio-economic and living conditions of the Scheduled Castes people.
Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP) is prepared as an integral part of Five Year Plan/Annual Plan showing sector-wise scheme-wise outlays earmarked for Scheduled Castes and corresponding physical targets. The subject relates to formulation and monitoring SCSP has been transferred to Adi-Dravidar Welfare Department during 2007-08. In order to deal SCSP matters, one officer in the rank of Deputy Director from this department has been spared with the Adi-dravidar Welfare Department. Adi-dravidar Welfare Department is the nodal department and Secretary (Welfare) is the Nodal Officer for the all matters relating to SCSP. The progress of SCSP expenditure is also reviewed by Hon’ble Minister (Welfare) and Secretary (Welfare) periodically. Being the nodal department for SCSP, Adi-dravidar Welfare Department shall provide all necessary information on SCSP matters directly to State / Central Government including National Commission for SC/ST as and when required.
SCSP is being formulated in UT of Puducherry based on the guidelines of Government of India. According to the guidelines received from Government of India, flow of funds to SCs in States and Union Territories should be equivalent to percentage of Scheduled Castes population to total population of the States and Union Territories. As per 2011 census, the population of SCs in this territory is 1,96,325, which is 15.73% of the total population of 12,47,953. Hence 15.73% of total Plan allocation should be earmarked for SCs in this Union Territory.
Planning and Research Department was used to communicate the size of outlay under SCSP to Adi-dravidar Welfare Department and the same would be reallocated in the line departments who are implementing SCSP in the UT of Puducherry prior to the merger of Plan and Non-Plan classification of expenditure with effect from 01.04.2018. Following abolition of Plan and Non-Plan classification of expenditure by Government of India, the demand for Grant-in-aid for 2018-19 was prepared on the basis of Revenue and Capital expenditure. The size of the budget allocation is finalized by the Budget Officer, Finance Department. With regard to allocation of funds under SCSP, following methodologies are being adopted by Finance Department. The SCSP outlay arrived from overall outlay after excluding CSS, Central Road Fund (CRF), Negotiated Loan and Externally Aided Proejcts.
A good number of schemes are implemented in this Union Territory under various sectors wherein the benefit of Plan schemes directly flow to SCs. It includes financial assistance for construction of houses, upgradation of existing houses, free distribution of housing sites, distribution of books, notebooks, uniforms, to school going children, distribution of bicycles free of cost to students of 9th Standard and above, distribution of agricultural implements, tractors at subsided cost, distribution of milch animals at subsided cost, special incentives to start industries, training for upgradation of skills of SCs, financial assistance to become the member of the Cooperative societies, free distribution of clothing items, distribution of rice during festival season, old age pension etc. Expenditure increased on these schemes may be shown under SCSP.
Number of educational institutions admitting SC students based on reservation policy being followed in this Union Territory. It includes admission to various professional colleges such as Puducherry Engineering College, Dental College, Agricultural college, Mother Teresa Institute of Hospitality Craft, Govt. Polytechnics, Centre for PG Studies etc. 16% allocation given to these institutions may be shown under Scheduled Caste Sub Plan. Similarly, Public Sector undertaking receives grant from Govt. of Puducherry. They have been insisted to ensure that 16% of benefits should flow to the SC community. It includes the programmes of Housing Board, Slum Clearance Board, Co-operative institutions etc. Public Sector undertaking engaged in commercial activities are instructed to ensure that 16% of employees should be from SC community. Allocation of funds and aids/Share Capital Assistance to the extent of 16% may be shown under Scheduled Caste Sub Plan.
The existing Guidelines for formulation, implementation and monitoring of Scheduled Caste Sub Plan for Scheduled Castes and Tribal Sub-Plan for Scheduled Tribes. as communicated by the Planning Commission vide their Letter D.O. No. M-13011/3/2005-SP-Co dt. 31.10.2005 are reproduced below.
Detailed guidelines relating to the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan for the Scheduled Castes and Tribal Sub-Plan for Scheduled Tribes have been issued by the concerned departments of the Central Government from time to time.
The basic objective of both these sub-plans is to channelise the flow of outlays and benefits from the general sectors in the Plan of States for the development of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes at least in proportion to their population, both in physical and financial terms. The Mid Term appraisal of the Tenth Plan has noted that several State Governments have not earmarked adequate funds to SCSP and STSP, proportionate to the share of SCs and STs in the population.
The Hon’ble Prime Minister has again underlined the importance of the SCSP and TSP while addressing the 51st Meeting of the National Development Council held on 27th June 2005. The Prime Minister had then stated, “in the mid-1970s, the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan and the Tribal Sub-Plan were initiated. Tribal Sub-Plans and Scheduled Caste Sub Plans should be an integral part of Annual Plans as well as Five Year Plans, making provisions therein non-divertible, with the clear objective of bridging the gap in socio-economic development of the SCs and STs within a period of 10 years”.
In this context, the following guidelines with respect to SCSP and TSP are once again reiterated so that the same may be followed strictly in the preparation of the Annual Plans.
The following should be the broad objectives of the SCSP :
- Substantial reduction in poverty and unemployment.
- Creation of productive assets in favour of Scheduled Castes to sustain the growth likely to accrue through development efforts.
- Human resource development of the Scheduled Castes by providing adequate educational and health services, and
- Provision of Physical and financial security against all types of exploitation and oppression.
To fulfill the above objectives the following points may be taken into account for formulating SCSP :
- Earmarking of funds for SCSP from total State Plan Outlay at least in the proportion of SC population to the total population of the State / UT.
- Scheduled Caste sub Plan funds should be non-divertable and non-lapsable.
- Making the Social Welfare Department/ the Department concerned with the welfare and development of SCs as nodal department for formulation and implementation of SCSP.
- Placing the funds earmarked for SCSP at the disposal of the nodal department concerned which in turn will reallocate the funds to the sectoral departments for implementing schemes directly relevant to SC development.
- Placing the funds earmarked for SCSP under separate budget head / sub-head for each development department implementing SCSP. In this connection it may be noted that the List of Major and Minor Heads of Account of Union and States as issued by the Controller General of Accounts provides Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (789) may be opened as Minor Head below the functional Major Head / Sub Major Head wherever necessary.
- Special Central Assistance (SCA) for the SCSP is being extended by the Centre to the States as a 100% grant meant to fill critical gaps and missing inputs for family-oriented income-generating schemes and supporting infrastructure development with a special focus on BPL families. Guidelines issued in this connection should be strictly followed.
Monitoring of SCSP
- State and District/Block level Monitoring Committees should be constituted to monitor the implementation of various schemes under SCSP of various development departments. The District/Block level committees may review the progress of implementation of schemes and utilization of funds on monthly basis and the State level committees may review the progress on quarterly basis.
- District and Block level committees may be constituted on the pattern of District and Block level committee constituted by the Ministry of Rural Development by involving elected members (MPs, MLAs and Panchayat members, and other prominent leaders in the districts) or the same committees may be entrusted with the responsibilities for monitoring of these programmes.
- The nodal department should ensure timely release of funds to the concerned development departments who in turn should ensure immediate release of funds soon after the receipts of funds from nodal department to their field level implementing agencies. Any lapse on the part of field level implementing agencies in timely utilization of funds and proper implementation of the schemes may be viewed seriously.
- Non-earmarking of funds under SCSP may result in non-approval of Plans of the States/UTs.
- Ministries of Social Justice & Empowerment and Tribal Affairs will be actively involved in the process of finalization of Annual Plans of the States/UTs.
- Evaluation to assess the impact of economic development schemes implemented under SCSP, on the socio-economic conditions of SCs may be get conducted by the nodal department on regular basis. Dissemination of information to SCs allover the State/UT about the schemes/programmes available for their development may be the responsibility of the nodal department. The nodal department may also ensure the follow up of the schemes implemented and maintenance of proper records on assets created under SCSP in District/Block etc.
MONITORING OF SCHEDULED CASTE SUB-PLAN
In the Union Territory of Puducherry, the implementation of Scheduled Caste Sub Plan is closely monitored through review meetings held under various levels. As a result of close monitoring of schemes implemented under SCSP, the percentage of expenditure in this Union Territory was always over 90%. The details of outlay and actual expenditure under SCSP since 1992-93 is given below: