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Union Budget
Union Budget 2014-2015: Women's rights groups disappointed
Union Budget for the fiscal year 2014-2015 has been presented today in the Parliament. In the budget finance minister Arun Jaitley announced a fund of Rs 100 cr for a scheme called 'Beti Padhao, Beti Badhao Yojna' targeted toward the welfare of girl child.

However, the women groups are not so happy with this budgetary announcement of 'Beti Padhao, Beti Badhao Yojna' and a lone 'Crisis Management Center' for Women at Delhi. Women's rights activists have shown their disappointment toward the new budget while saying that the budget has not offered anything for women empowerment.

Are you happy with Indian Union Budget 2014?
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Kavita Krishnan, Secretary of All India Progressive Women's Association (AIPWA) says that Rs 100 crore is a very tiny amount. Krishnan also talked about the crisis management center to be started in Delhi.

She said, "The crisis management center should not be only in Delhi. The whole value of the crisis center is if it is located local. But if the centers are not available locally, then woman have to go very far away to get that help and it is of no use. Crisis center is useful only if it is very local, as in at least in every district. So, we need Crisis Management Centers all over the country. So, in that case the kind of allocation required, I would suggest that the Centre should provide substantial amount for that and take the responsibility and ask states also to contribute. Give the initial infrastructure, and let the state look after its maintenance."

She also talked about her expectations on the budget and said, "My expectation has been for a long time, that on three counts there should be a specific allocation. First one is there should be an allocation for crisis setup as well as shelters. The condition of shelters in this country is dismal, they are not enough and what exist is really in bad shape. Secondarily, the thing would have been that, we really need much more number of judges and courts, overall and not just for fast track. To overcome the structural problem of delayed justice you need more courts and more judges, and for that allocation should have been made. Third this is to do with issues of employment and women's security and safety, basically economic security."

Sudha Sudraraman, General Secretry of All India Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA) is very disappointed with the budget. She said, "Generally speaking, this budget has nothing to offer the 'aam aurat'. What we were looking at, was allocation from the Central government for Women and Child Development and the women related schemes, but a large chunk of it has been shifted away from the Centre to the state, which really means that there is going to be a lack of accountability at the Centre for many of the schemes that are meant for women. This minimum governance thing is going to workout in a strange way, where something is not working, then we can't even ask anything from the central government. So we don't see it as a great budget, but it is quite disappointing."

Noorjehan Saif Niaz, co-founder of Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Andolan raised a strong point. She said, "They have introduced some schemes for women, but the implementation of those schemes is the most important thing. The amount allocated to the scheme is also very less. The schemes and entitlements have their own importance but other than the schemes, there should had been more benefits for women, because schemes are something which can be used only if you know about it. So the things should not be on demand, it should be given to the people."

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