सीधे मुख्य सामग्री पर जाएं

Gender and Union budget 2022-23: Silence on concerns of social protection


By IMPRI Team
Research has shown that, globally, women had to disproportionately bear the brunt of the Covid-19 pandemic. In India, Female Labour Force Participation fell to a historic low of 21% in 2019, and gender disparity widened across employment, health, political participation, and education. Given the precarious condition of Indian women, it is imperative to analyze the Union Budget 2022-23 from a gendered lens and see how the central government intends to bridge this inequality.
Under this backdrop, the IMPRI Gender Impact Study Center, Impact and Policy Research Institute, New Delhi, hosted a panel discussion on Gender and Budget 2022-23.
The talk was chaired by Prof. Vibhuti Patel, Visiting Professor, IMPRI, and Mr. Ravi Duggal, Independent Social, Public Health Researcher, and Activist. The Panelists for the event were Prof. N. Manimekalai, Ms. Seema Kulkarni, Dr. Sanghamitra Dhar, Ms. Jasodhara Dasgupta, and Ms. Renu Khanna.
Prof. Patel and Mr. Duggal commenced the discussion by introducing the panelists and giving a brief outline of the budget 2022-23. Mr. Duggal opined that the budget is capital-oriented, and there has been a shift from welfare programs to private sector programs. There has been a reduction in several welfare schemes such as MNREGA, food subsidies, rural livelihood, etc. The funds have been relocated to help the private sector.
Coming to the gendered aspect of the budget, he highlighted that the gender budget has remained flat for some years hovering around 4-5%. Additionally, on the income side, it appears that the Government is not concerned about tax revenue as the tax to GDP ratio remains at only 10%.
Moving on with the discussion, Dr. Sangamitra Dhar stated that the gender lens on the budget is still a work in progress. While speaking on the subject, she stressed majorly on capacity building of the Ministry and stakeholders to carry forward and implement the schemes to foster women’s empowerment. Coming to this year’s Budget, she believed that gender equity through this budget looks encouraging. Women will definitely benefit from all the policies surrounding digitization, privatization, better infrastructure, and mental health programs. According to her, the allocations in the budget are enough, but the capacity building at the state and center levels is not enough and needs to be worked upon.
Ms. Jasodhara Dasgupta brought to the discussion the nutrition and social security conditions of women in India and the budgetary allocation for the same. She introduced the topic by giving the statistics on Indian women’s health conditions as recorded in the NFHS-5 data. The data shows that anemia levels in women have gone up across all age groups, and the percentage of thin women has reduced only from 23% to 19%.
Despite such dire conditions, the allocation for essential schemes such as supplementary nutrition has been reduced from the last budget if we adjust for 5% annual inflation. Additionally, the allocation for Mid Day Meals in schools and subsidies for cooking fuel has been reduced.
Coming to social security, India’s human development rank stands at 131 out of 189 countries. Research has shown that India’s spending on social security is much less than the global average, and inequality has increased considerably over the last year. There persists a significant gender gap in social security in India. All the laws and policies for social protection are employment-based, and women lose out on this protection since FLFP is extremely low and 95% of women work in the informal sector.
She provided specific recommendations for engendering the budget, such as universalizing the PDS Scheme, bringing back ICDS, providing maternity protection, and pension and social security for transgender, widow, the elderly, etc.
Ms. Renu Khanna spoke about the Union Budget 2022-23 and Gender from a health perspective. She highlighted that the health budget has only been allocated 2.26% of the total budget even though health expenditure as a percentage of total expenditure was 2.46% in the year 2020-21. It is, however, equally important to note that in the Union Budget 2022-23, we should have seen major allocations to the Health sector given the problems faced by people in India during the COVID-19 pandemic.
India is currently facing shortfalls in human resources with regards to healthcare resources, infrastructure and health workforce. She further provided statistics to highlight the reduction of routine reproductive health services in India that clearly reflect the situation on the ground.
Delving deeper into the discussion, Ms. Renu stated that schemes like Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission and National Tele Mental Health will lead to a gender gap in digital inclusion or digital divide due to lack of access to the internet and devices like smartphones to all. She further spoke about PM- JAY and insurance schemes that have been introduced without taking into account the various demographic groups and, sexual and reproductive health of women.
Suggesting the issues we need to focus on concerning health, gender and budget, she emphasized on the necessity to increase expenditure on health and the need to strengthen and expand public health services, in particular, primary health.
Talking about agriculture and allied activities from a gender perspective and highlighting the issues faced by farmers and women in agriculture, Ms.Seema Kulkarni stated that the entire focus of the budget is towards privatization and the budget allocation for the agriculture sector doesn’t allow us to understand the allotment for its different components. She further highlighted the importance to recognize the engagement of women in agriculture and the need for policies that support and encourage gender diversification, especially women, in the agriculture sector.
As per the Census of India, only 26% of female cultivators have access to direct agricultural credit which is certainly a matter of serious concern. She further discussed the role of organizations like MAKAAM (Mahila Kisan Adhikar Manch) in advocating women’s rights, and providing equal access to resources. It is evident that over the years, the proportion of women account holders has increased significantly even though women’s access to credit is abysmal.
Seema Kulkarni further mentioned the significance of recognition through registrations of women workers and the call for improvement and advancement of women’s rights over land, nature, and forests.
Further, Prof. N. Manimekalai talks about low Female Labour Force Participation (FLFP). She highlights that women’s participation in the labor force had always been low, and after the pandemic, it became worse. Pandemic forced women to move to casual labor, and they had to manage work with household chores. She also highlighted the massive digital divide between males and females in India and mentioned that only 21% of Indian women use mobile internet compared to 42% of men.
Given the poor employment ecosystem for women, the budget has offered no positive direction for women’s employment. She opined that the budget’s preference for capital expenditure in infrastructure projects would not benefit women compared to men.
While the construction industry has improved over the years, women’s presence has declined. Additionally, while most of the budget is focused on digitalization, it is not sure how it will ensure employment creation.
She also talked about disparity in the self-employment and entrepreneurship sector. While women-led enterprises are increasing, their marketing is not enough, hindering their competency. She believes that women and child protection schemes are lacking, and the capital expenditure-led budget will not benefit them. There is a need to acknowledge the employment crisis, universalize PDS allocation, strengthen SHGs, and provide better social protection.
Prof Vibhuti Patel summed up the entire discussion by stating that the Union Budget 2022-23 is silent on the concerns of social protection and has not focused on issues of inflation, access to education and healthcare for all. She also mentioned that there has been a reduction in fund allocation for National schemes such as MNREGA that benefit the population falling under BPL (Below Poverty Line).
Ravi Duggal added that the gender budget statement should be developed by undertaking gender audits and that we need to focus on strengthening gender- disaggregated data.
Dr. Sanghamitra Dhar and Prof. N. Manimekalai concluded by saying that we need to understand the multi-stakeholder roles in the gender budget conversation and that it is high time we formulate and implement policies for women in different fields including agriculture.

टिप्पणियाँ

ट्रेंडिंग

हिंदी आलोचना जैसे पिछड़ चुके अनुशासन की जगह हिंदी वैचारिकी का विकास जरूरी

- प्रमोद रंजन*   भारतीय राजनीति में सांप्रदायिक व प्रतिक्रियावादी ताकतों को सत्ता तक पहुंचाने में हिंदी पट्टी का सबसे बड़ा योगदान है। इसका मुख्य कारण हिंदी-पट्टी में कार्यरत समाजवादी व जनपक्षधर हिरावल दस्ते का विचारहीन, अनैतिक और  प्रतिक्रियावादी होते जाना है। अगर हम उपरोक्त बातों को स्वीकार करते हैं, तो कुछ रोचक निष्कर्ष निकलते हैं। हिंदी-जनता और उसके हिरावल दस्ते को विचारहीन और प्रतिक्रियावादी बनने से रोकने की मुख्य ज़िम्मेदारी किसकी थी?

ગુજરાતના સ્થાપના દિવસે યાદ કરીએ ભારતના વિશ્વપ્રસિદ્ધ ગુજરાતી પુરાતત્વવિદ્ ને

- ગૌરાંગ જાની*  આજે કોઈ ગુજરાતી એ કલ્પના પણ ન કરી શકે કે વર્ષ ૧૮૩૯ માં જૂનાગઢમાં જન્મેલા એક ગુજરાતી વિશ્વ પ્રસિદ્ધ બની શકે! પણ આપણે એ ગુજરાતીને કદાચ વિસરી ગયા છીએ જેમણે ગિરનારના અશોક શિલાલેખને દોઢસો વર્ષ પૂર્વે ઉકેલી આપ્યો.આ વિદ્વાન એટલે ભગવાનલાલ ઈન્દ્રજી. ૭ નવેમ્બર, ૧૮૩૯ ના દિવસે જૂનાગઢના પ્રશ્નોરા નાગર બ્રાહ્મણ પરિવારમાં તેમનો જન્મ થયો હતો. જૂનાગઢના એ સમયે અંગ્રેજી શિક્ષણની સગવડ ન હોવાને કારણે તેમને અંગ્રેજી ભાષાનું જ્ઞાન ન હતું પણ પાછળથી તેમણે ખપ પૂરતું અંગ્રેજી જાણી લીધું હતું.

Under Modi, democracy is regressing and economy is also growing slowly

By Avyaan Sharma*   India is "the largest democracy in the world", but now its democracy is regressing and its economy is also growing slowly. What has PM Modi's ten years in power brought us? Unemployment remains high. Joblessness is particularly high among India's youth - with those aged 15 to 29 making up a staggering 83% of all unemployed people in India, according to the "India Employment Report 2024", published last month by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Institute of Human Development (IHD). The BJP-led government did not provide jobs to two crore youth in a year as was promised by Modi in the run up to the 2014 general elections.

नफरती बातें: मुसलमानों में असुरक्षा का भाव बढ़ रहा है, वे अपने मोहल्लों में सिमट रहे हैं

- राम पुनियानी*  भारत पर पिछले 10 सालों से हिन्दू राष्ट्रवादी भारतीय जनता पार्टी (भाजपा) राज कर रही है. भाजपा आरएसएस परिवार की सदस्य है और आरएसएस का लक्ष्य है हिन्दू राष्ट्र का निर्माण. आरएसएस से जुड़ी सैंकड़ों संस्थाएँ हैं. उसके लाखों, बल्कि शायद, करोड़ों स्वयंसेवक हैं. इसके अलावा कई हजार वरिष्ठ कार्यकर्ता हैं जिन्हें प्रचारक कहा जाता है. भाजपा के सत्ता में आने के बाद से आरएसएस दुगनी गति से हिन्दू राष्ट्र के निर्माण के अपने एजेण्डे को पूरा करने में जुट गया है. यदि भाजपा को चुनावों में लगातार सफलता हासिल हो रही है तो उसका कारण है देश में साम्प्रदायिकता और साम्प्रदायिक मुद्दों का बढ़ता बोलबाला. इनमें से कुछ हैं राम मंदिर, गौमांस और गोवध एवं लव जिहाद. 

Laxmanpur Bathe massacre: Perfect example of proto-fascist Brahmanical social order

By Harsh Thakor  The massacre at Laxmanpur-Bathe of Jehanabad in Bihar on the night of 1 December in 1997 was a landmark event with distinguishing features .The genocide rightly shook the conscience of the nation in the 50th year of Indian independence. The scale of the carnage was unparalleled in any caste massacre. It was a perfect manifestation of how in essence the so called neo-liberal state was in essence most autocratic. 

ભારતમાં જિસસ ક્રાઈસ્ટના દર્શન, ખ્રિસ્તી ધર્મના આગમનને કારણે સમાજ વ્યવસ્થામાં પરિવર્તન

- ઉત્તમ પરમાર  મારી કિશોર અવસ્થામાં કેટલાક ચિત્રો અને મૂર્તિઓએ હૃદયમાં એવું સ્થાન જમાવ્યું છે કે આજદિન પર્યંત  ઉત્તરોઉત્તર વિકસતું જ રહ્યું છે. પ્રેમ કરુણાના મૂર્તિમંત અવતાર  જિસસ ક્રાઈસ્ટને વધુસ્તંભે ચઢાવેલી મૂર્તિ  મારી કોઈપણ ધર્મ વિશેની સમજ નહોતી ત્યારથી મારા હૃદયમાં સ્થાપિત થયેલી છે. મારા ઘરની દિવાલ પર વધસ્તંભે ચઢેલા જીસસની પ્રતિમા જોઈને કોઈ મને પૂછી બેસતું કે તું ક્રિશ્ચન છે?

रैंकिंग: अधिकांश भारतीय विश्वविद्यालयों का स्तर बहुत गिरा, इस साल भी यह गिरवाट जारी

- प्रमोद रंजन*  अप्रैल, 2024 में भारतीय विश्वविद्यालयों की अंतर्राष्ट्रीय स्तर पर उच्च रैंकिंग की चर्चा रही। मीडिया ने इसका उत्सव मनाया। लेकिन स्थिति इसके विपरीत है। वैश्विक विश्वविद्यालय रैंकिग में अच्छा स्थान मिलने की खबरें, कुछ संस्थानों को इक्का-दुक्का विषयों में मिले रैंक के आधार पर चुनिंदा ढंग से प्रकाशित की गईं थीं। वास्तविकता यह है कि हाल के वर्षों में हमारे अधिकांश विश्वविद्यालयों का स्तर बहुत गिर गया है। इस साल भी यह गिरवाट जारी रही है।

नोएडा में मैन्युअल स्कैवेंजर्स की मौत: परिवारों को मुआवजा नहीं, प्राधिकरण ने एफआईआर नहीं की

- अरुण खोटे, संजीव कुमार*  गत एक सप्ताह में, उत्तर प्रदेश में सीवर/सेप्टि क टैंक सफाई कर्मियों की सफाई के दौरान सेप्टिक टैंक में मौत। 2 मई, 2024 को, लखनऊ के वज़ीरगजं क्षेत्र में एक सेवर लाइन की सफाई करते समय शोब्रान यादव, 56, और उनके पत्रु सशुील यादव, 28, घटुन से हुई मौत। एक और घटना 3 मई 2024 को नोएडा, सेक्टर 26 में एक घर में सेप्टि क टैंक को सफाई करते समय दो सफाई कर्मचर्मारी नूनी मडंल, 36 और कोकन मडंल जिसे तपन मडंल के नाम से जानते हैं, की मौत हो गई। ये सफाई कर्मचर्मारी बंगाल के मालदा जिले के निवासी थे और नोएडा सेक्टर 9 में रहते थे। कोकन मडंल अपनी पत्नी अनीता मडंल के साथ रहते थे। इनके तीन स्कूल जाने वाले बच्चे हैं जो बंगाल में रहते हैं। नूनी मडंल अपनी पत्नी लिलिका मडंल और अपने पत्रु सजुान के साथ किराए पर झग्गी में रहते थे। वे दैनिक मजदरूी और सफाई कर्मचर्मारी के रूप में काम करते थे।

प्राचीन भारत के लोकायत संप्रदाय ने कुछ परजीवियों की खूब खबर ली: प्रमुख प्रस्थापनायें

- राणा सिंह   भारत में परजीवियों का एक विशाल समूह है जो बोलता है कि “सब कुछ माया है”,  लेकिन व्यवहार में यह समूह सारी जिंदगी इसी “माया” के पीछे पागल रहता है।  प्राचीन भारत के लोकायत संप्रदाय ने इन परजीवियों की खूब खबर ली थी।

बिहार के ऐतिहासिक विक्रमशिला विश्वविद्यालय के खंडहरों की परिक्रमा का रोमांचक अवसर

- सुमन्त शरण  कुछ दिन पहले एक सुदूर ग्रामीण अंचल (पीरपैंती)  से तकरीबन डेढ़-दो घंटे की दूरी पर अवस्थित ऐतिहासिक बौद्ध विक्रमशिला विश्वविद्यालय (के अवशेषों) की परिक्रमा का अवसर मिला। विक्रमशीला विश्वविद्यालय की स्थापना पाल वंश के राजा धर्मपाल ने की थी। 8वीं शताब्दी से 12वीं शताब्दी के अंत तक यह विश्वविद्यालय भारत के प्रमुख शिक्षा केंद्रों में से एक हुआ करता था। कहा जाता है कि यह अपने कुछेक अत्यंत अनूठे नवाचार के चलते उस समय नालंदा विश्वविद्यालय का सबसे बड़ा प्रतिस्पर्धी था। हालांकि, मान्यता यह भी है कि अल्प अवधि के लिए दोनों विश्वविद्यालय के बीच शिक्षण एवं प्रबंधन के क्षेत्रों में घनिष्ठ पारस्परिक संबंध एवं शिक्षकों के आदान-प्रदान का सिलसिला भी रहा था। यह विश्वविद्यालय तंत्रशास्त्र की पढ़ाई के लिए सबसे ज्यादा विख्यात था। इस विषय का एक सबसे विख्यात छात्र अतीसा दीपनकरा था, जो बाद में तिब्बत जाकर बौद्ध हो गया। इसके प्रथम कुलपति ज्ञान अतिस थे।