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Delhi Budget 2015: 253 Crore For Self Rule, And More – Here’s How Delhi Plans To Spend

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By IndiaSpend Team:

Decide your neighbourhood priorities, instead of leaving it to the government.

With that thought in mind, Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia announced Rs 253 crore for a Swaraj (self-rule) fund. That is in tune with the way the first full budget of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government was prepared.

Image credit: Indiaspend
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal (left) and Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia at a budget consultation meeting with industry and trade bodies on June 3, 2015. Image: Govt. of Delhi

There was “an overwhelming response” to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s appeal for public suggestions in creating the budget, Sisodia said in his June 25 budget speech. More than 1,500 were received after “extensive consultations” at public meetings, discussions with resident associations, NGOs and companies.

Education and health are clearly priorities for the controversy-prone government of India’s richest state, aware that both subjects are priorities for voters.

In a state with 86% literacy—the national average is 74%—and a strong family focus on schooling and jobs, Sisodia doubled the plan outlay on education to Rs 4,570 crore from Rs 2,219 crore in the previous year.

Some of the education proposals include:

  1. Modern facilities and infrastructure in 1,011 government schools
  2. Hire 20,000 regular teachers by the end of the year
  3. Closed-circuit cameras in all classrooms of government schools
  4. Fifty state schools to become “model schools”

The government also plans three Indian Technology Institutes (ITIs) and five new polytechnics, designed to provide vocational training and so better job prospects of young voters.

Health spending will rise 45% from last year to Rs 3,138 crore. Plans include 500 mohalla (neighbourhood) clinics, three new hospitals—an addition of 1,800 beds—and the upgrading of 11 existing hospitals with 4,000 beds.

Sisodia also announced subsidies for new buyers of battery-operated four-wheelers and two-wheelers, and a fixed subsidy of Rs 15,000 to battery-operated rickshaw owners for promoting eco-friendly transport in Delhi.

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Sisodia, as IndiaSpend reported earlier, said Delhi would have received Rs 25,000 crore had it been included in the 14th Finance Commission recommendations.

The Fourteenth Central Finance Commission has recommended increased devolution of central taxes to states from 32% to 42%. Delhi being excluded from the terms of reference of the Finance Commission is deprived of the benefit from this recommendation, although Delhi has a separate consolidated fund like other states and all financial transactions of the Government are met from its own resources. Had this recommendation been applied to Delhi, then Delhi would have received approximately Rs 25,000 crore during the award period (2015-20),” Sisodia said.

Delhi complains against money from New Delhi

The estimated receipts are Rs 41,500 crore while proposed expenditure is Rs 41,129 crore with a surplus of Rs 371 crore.

The share in central taxes and duties of NCT of Delhi, which is given by the Government of India, is at Rs 325 crore for this financial year and has remained stagnant since the last 14 years. In spite of the increased devolution of central taxes to states by Government of India from 32% to 42%, there has been no increase in devolution of central taxes to Delhi,” Sisodia said.

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Delhi has some of India’s best development indicators: a per capita income (at current prices) of Rs 2.41 lakh, almost three times the national per capita income of Rs 87,748, according to the Economic Survey presented last week; more than 97% of Delhi’s population lives in urban areas, according to census 2011; and the sex ratio (number of females per 1,000 males) of the state has improved to 868 in 2011 from 821 in 2001.

The infant mortality rate, an estimate of infant deaths for every 1,000 live births, is 22 as against the national average of 40. The maternal mortality ratio, the number of women aged 15-49 dying per 100,000 live births, is 146 in Delhi as against the national average of 167.

This article was originally published on IndiaSpend.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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