Social Exclusion and Vulnerable Groups: Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Backward Classes, Minorities, Women, Children, Aged and Disabled

Table of Content

  1. Caste System
  2. Issues Related to Women
    • Gender Discrimination
    • Low status of women
    • Dowry System
    • Sati practice
  3. Issues related to Youth
  4. Issues related to Minority
  5. Issues related to Tribal
  6. Issues related to Farmers
  7. Issues related to Labourers
  8. Issues related to Professionals
  9. Issues related to Person with Disablity
  10. Substance Abuse and Addiction
  11. Communalism
  12. Illiteracy
  13. Issues Related to elderly
  14. Poverty
  15. Beggary
  16. Unemployment
  17. Superstition
  18. Problems related to children’s
    • Child labour
    • Child marriage
    • Juvenile delinquency or Justice system

 

Caste System

The caste system in India has its roots in ancient India. Just as the ashrama dharma laid down rules and duties with reference to the individual’s life in the world, varna or caste system prescribed duties with reference to the particular caste to which an individual belonged. Earlier they were all regarded equal in social status and could take up any profession they liked.

There was no restriction in the matter of eating food or marriage with members of other profession. But with the beginning of specializing in hereditary professions and coming in contact with the indigenous people situations changed and the birth of the person decided their caste. Hence the varna system that developed during that time was the outcome of the social and economic development.

But as time passed, it led to the division of society into high-caste and low-caste people who could not mix with each other. Inter-caste dining or marriage was forbidden. People belonging to the so called lower castes were exploited and slowly down the ages, their condition became miserable. They were poor and did not enjoy equality in society. They were not even allowed to draw water from the common wells of the villages, or even could go to the temples or to come close to the people of the so called higher castes. Thus caste system hampered the healthy growth of different professions as entry into a particular profession was based on birth and not on ability.

Caste-based discrimination has at times even led to violence. The caste-system also makes the working of democracy in our country difficult. Society gets divided into artificial groups that tend to support the candidate who belongs to their caste. They do not pay much attention to the fact whether he/she is a deserving candidate or not. This is not good for the health of democracy in India. Our country cannot make real progress unless this system is uprooted completely.

During the post-independence period, i.e. after 1947, the Government has taken cognizance of these issues and tried to tackle them through legislation (enacting laws to counter these issues) as well as by social action (by involving the civil society, NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) and social groups. These steps have helped in improving the situation but still a lot more needs to be done


Issues Related to Women

Gender Discrimination

Discrimination against women begins even before her birth. The gruesome evils of female feticide and infanticide prove how brutal the world could be to women.

Though the Indian constitution provides equal rights and privileges for men and women and makes equal provision to improve the status of women in society, majority of women are still unable to enjoy the rights and opportunities guaranteed to them.

Traditional value system, low level of literacy, more house hold responsibilities lack of awareness, non-availability of proper guidance, low mobility, lack of self confidence family discouragement and advanced science and technology are some of the factors responsible to create gender disparity in our society. The most important causes of gender disparity such as poverty, illiteracy, unemployment, social customs, belief and anti-female attitude are discussed here.

Low status of women

The status ow women in India has been affected by following factors:-

  • Property rights
  • Illiteracy
  • Patriarchal society
  • social taboo

Dowry System

The practice of dowry is one of the worst social practices that has affected our culture. In independent India, one of the landmark legislations is the passing of the Dowry Prohibition Act in 1961 by the Government of India. Despite the fact that the practice of both giving as well as accepting dowry is banned by law and such acts are punishable offences, the system is so thoroughly imbedded in our culture that it continues unabated.

Whether it is rural or urban India, the blatant violation of this law is rampant. Not only dowry deaths, even most of the acts of domestic violence against women including psychological as well as physical torture are related to matters of dowry. Some of the very basic human rights of women are violated almost every day. Sometimes it is heartening to see some girls stand firm to assert their rights against dowry. But there is an urgent need to strengthen such hands by taking some concrete as well as comprehensive social, economic, political and administrative measures in order to free Indian society of this disease

Sati practice

Sati (also called suttee) is the practice among some Hindu communities by which a recently widowed woman either voluntarily or by use of force or coercion commits suicide as a result of her husband’s death. The best known form of sati is when a woman burns to death on her husband’s funeral pyre. Raja Rammohan Roy even filed a petition for a law banning sati practice.He percuaded William Bentinck, the Governor of Bengal, to ban sati practice in British India.

Various program and schemes for women development are:-

  • Rajiv Gandhi Scheme for Empowerment of Adolescent Girls (RGSEAG) – SABLA Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana (IGMSY – CMB Scheme
  • Support to Training and Employment Programme for Women (STEP) Women Empowerment and Livelihood Programme in Mid-Gangetic Plains
  • Swadhar
  • Short Stay Homes Working Womens’ Hostel
  • Ujjawala
  • Gender Budgeting Initiatives
  • National Mission for Empowerment of Women Family Counselling Centers
  • Condensed Courses of Education of Women Awareness Generation Programme
  • General Grant-in-aid Scheme for Innovative Work on Women and Child Development Convention on Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
  • Beijing Platform for Action


Issues related to Youth

Education:

First and the foremost concern of today’s youth in India is education. Indian youth demands for better education, employment driven training and brighter future. Youth also want that skill based education and job placement should be a part of every higher institution. More emphasis should be laid down on career oriented courses and there should be a connection with real life scenario rather than just bookish. Youth from non-urban setting generally lacks good communication skills. This is also one of the major concerns because it acts as an obstacle on the way to get job and progress.

Unemployment :

Youth unemployment in India is on rise. According to the World Development Report 2013, 9% of males and 11% females aged between 15 to 24 years are unemployed. As per data of 2009-10, 9.7% of young men and 18.7% of young women in India were unemployed. At global level, chances of youth being unemployed is three times more than adults. Global financial crisis hit youth first then adult. Also as per NSSO survey, youth unemployment among illiterate is less as compared to educated youth. Because illiterate youth is willing to do all sorts of work whereas educated ones look for jobs in their respective field only. Young graduates suffer the most as far as getting job is concerned.

Corruption

Today’s youth is concerned with the issue of corruption more than anything else and that is why most of the protestors in the recent Anna Hazare’s campaign against corruption were the Indian youth.

Substance Abuse and Addiction

Drug abusing youths are vulnerable to horrible health issues that may spiral to death. Due to consumption of illegal substance, youth face various challenges like school dropout, which then later affects their employment chances since they lack adequate education.

Health

The changing feeding habits have caused serious health issues with the youth of the nation. Obesity and other health issues are on a rise.

Skill Developement

Youth of the nation are the founding stone for national development. India could harness the Demographic dividend if the youth of the nation are skilled. Skill India Mission is a revolutionary idea in bringing the sustainable economic growth to the nation.


 Issues related to Minority

Various problems of minority in India are:-

  • Communalism and communal tension
  • Rise in Extremism
  • Education and skill development
  • poverty and unemployment

Various constitutional provisions and other steps taken for the development of minority community in India are:-

  •  National Commission for Minorities
  • National Commission for Religious and Linguistic Minorities
  • Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities
  • The Central Wakf Council
  • The Durgah Khwaja Saheb Act, 1955
  • Prime Minister’s 15 Point Programme for the Welfare of Minorities
  • Exclusive scholarship schemes for students belonging to the minority communities
  • Identification of Minority Concentration Districts Free Coaching and Allied Scheme
  • National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation
  • Initiatives taken in Pursuance of the Sachar Committee Recommendation

Issues related to Tribal

Tribal’s are the aboriginal residents of the Indian subcontinent.They have been exploited for the ages and are the most vulnerable and underdeveloped section of the Indian society.

In the areas where tribal populations are concentrated, their economic and social conditions are usually much worse than those of non-tribals. The independence of India in 1947 should have made life easier for adivasis but this was not the case. Firstly, the government monopoly over forests continued. If anything, the exploitation of forests accelerated. Secondly, the policy of capital-intensive industrialization adopted by the Indian government required mineral resources and power-generation capacities which were concentrated in Adivasi areas.

Adivasi lands were rapidly acquired for new mining and dam projects. In the process, millions of adivasis were displaced without any appropriate compensation or rehabilitation. Justified in the name of ‘national development’ and ‘economic growth’, these policies were actually a form of internal colonialism, subjugating adivasis and alienating the resources upon which they depended.This alienation of land has lead to rise of descent in the tribal population and has caused the problem of Naxalism.

  • Tribal Sub-Plan (TSP)
  • Special Central Assistance for Tribal Sub-Plan
  • National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation
  • Adivasi Mahila Sashaktikaran Yojana (AMSY)
  • Micro-credit scheme
  • Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED)
  • Grants under the First Proviso to Article 275(1) of the Constitution o Program for development of Forest Villages
  • Scheme for Primitive Tribal Groups (PTGs)
  • Scheme of Construction of Hostels for ST Boys and Girls o Establishment of Ashram Schools in Tribal Sub-Plan Area
  • Upgradation of Merit of ST students
  • Post Matric Scholarships for ST students o Vocational Training in Tribal Areas
  • Education of Girls in Low Literacy Pockets o Grants-in-Aid to Voluntary Organisations
  • Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship (RGNF)
  • National Overseas Scholarship Scheme for Scheduled Tribes (NON-Plan
  • Scheme of TOP Class Education for ST Students
  • Grants-in-Aid for Minor Forest Produce (MPP) Operations

Issues related to Farmers

India is a tropical country and Indian Agriculture is rightly called as an gamble with the monsoon. Even after 60 years of independence more than half of the population of the nation depends on agriculture for there livelihood.

the major problems and issues of Farmers are:-

  • Unavailability of HYV Seeds
  • Seasonal fluctuations in rainfall
  • Lack of Irrigation facilities
  • shortage of state of art farm machinery
  • Lack of financial resources and institutions which led them in the web of money lenders
  • Non availability of other sources of income
  • Disguised unemployment
  • Juiveline stage of Cooperative and contract farming
  • Structural and Infrastructural shortage in agricultural farming
  • High Inflation
  • Limited extent of E-Agriculture and use of ICT in agriculture
  • Weather forecasting
  • Soil Health cards
  • shortfall in Storage and Warehouses infrastructure
  • Small size of farm holding restricts the mechanization of Indian Agriculture
  • Excessive irrigation and soil salination specially in green revolution areas.

Issues related to Labourers 

Issues of agricultural labour

  1. Excess Supply – there are no accurate estimates of work forces as most of the activity and persons involved is unorganized and unreported. However the number of persons to work on and feed off a holding is very high.
  2. Seasonal Employment – varying weather patterns – drought, floods, heat cold cause an unreliable productivity.
  3. Backward classes SC ST – farmers usually come from a less privileged class and hence are mostly un-educated and do not have benefits of respect of the society.
  4. Small farm land holdings – which result in a lack of economies of scale.
  5. Limited subsidiary occupation – alternate revenue streams from other activities are not available to farmers.
  6. Heterogeneous – issues and problems have regional variations.
  7. Migration to other occupations – the more educated and efficient work forces are migrating to other forms of employment, leaving weaker work forces in the agricultural profession.
  8. Indebtedness – money is borrowed from exploitative private money lenders. Borrowings spiral and the ability to pay back is limited. There is a need for agro finance, micro-finance, cooperative banking and financial products to suit farmers needs and longer term payback schedules.

Issues of Industrial Labour:-

  1. Freedom of Association, Right to organize and Right to Collective Bargaining
  2. Abolition of forced labor
  3. Minimum age of employment and abolition of child labor
  4. Prohibition on workplace discrimination and Equal pay for men and women for work of equal value
  5. Simplification of procedures
  6. Huge Informal Sector
  7. Entry and exit Barriers for firms and Job security for workers
  8. Modernization

 


Issues related to Professionals

  • depressed or suffering from anxiety disorders
  • Lack of self confidence,
  • unrealistic expectations
  • a nutrient deficient diet and health problems
  • lifestyle diseases
  • Changing social and family values

Issues related to Person with Disablity

The differently abled are not ‘disabled’ only because they are physically or mentally impaired’ but also because society is built in a manner that does not cater to their needs. Society has for long neglected the needs and social values of the person with disabilities.
The social construction of disability has another dimension. There is a close relationship between disability and poverty. Malnutrition, mothers weakened by frequent childbirth, inadequate immunization programmes, accidents in overcrowded homes, all contribute to an incidence of disability among poor people that is higher than among people living in easier circumstances. Furthermore, disability creates and exacerbates poverty by increasing isolation and economic strain, not just for the individual but for the family; there is little doubt that disabled people are among the poorest in poor countries.

Various programs and steps taken for the welfare of person with disability are:-

  • The Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.
  • National Trust for the Welfare of Persons with Autism, Cerebral palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities
  • Office of the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities
  • Rehabilitation Council of India
  • Biwako Millennium Framework
  • National Handicapped Finance and Development Corporation
  • Scheme for Assistance to disabled Persons for Purchase/Fitting of aids and appliances Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India
  • Composite Regional Centers and Regional Rehabilitation Centers

Communalism

India is a multi religious nation with different communities living in peace with other communities since ages . Persons belonging to different communities such as Hindus, Sikhs, Muslims, Christians, Parsees, etc. live in India. The aggressive attitude of one community towards the other creates tension and clashes between two religious communities. Hundreds of people die in communal riots. It breeds hatred and mutual suspicion.

Communalism is an issue that needs to be tackled and eradicated. It poses a great challenge to democracy and unity of our country. It is therefore, a major obstacle in the path of our progress. Education is one very important means through which we can hope to bring peace and harmony in society. We must remember that we are all human beings first, before we belong to a religious community. We must respect all religions. Our country is secular, which means that all religions are treated equally and everyone is free to follow their own religion.


Illiteracy

Literacy is defined as the ability to read and write. It is an evolving concept which not only entails the grasping abilities of printed text but also the abilities to adapt visual entities and technological awareness as well.

  • Causes of low literacy in India are:-
  • inadequate school facilities.
  • The teaching staff  is inefficient and unqualified.
  • lack of proper sanitation which adversely effects specially the female education.
  • shortage of teachers as well.
  • Social Taboo specially against the female education
  • Poverty and unemployment are the major cause of illiteracy.
  • Shortfalls in the implementation of Right to Education.

Issues Related to elderly


Poverty


Beggary


Superstition


Problems related to children’s

 

Health and Education are the prime requirement for development of nation and states. It is unfortunate that even after more than six decades of independence;we are still termed as most backward nation on number of health and education indicators.{facts – i.e. 42% of Indian children are malnourished etc, include IMR rate which is highest in MP.} Now time has come to find the reasons why even after investing huge amount we could not make satisfactory progress in health sector especially of women and children. If these impediments are removed, nation can expects major breakthrough in the sector. The main objective of the Department of Women & Child Development is to reduce Maternal Mortality Rate, Infant Mortality rate and Malnutrition among children and women. Thus main responsibility of implementation of Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) Programme in the State lies with the department.{include ICDS background and its problems}. schemes/programs include women group formation, legal literacy programme for women, elimination of  prostitution, Beti Bachao Abhiyan for increasing female sex ratio, empowering Adolescent Girls of 11 to 18 years by improving their nutritional and health status through Rajiv Gandhi Scheme for Empowerment of Adolescent Girls(SABLA), up gradation of home skills, life skills andvocational skills. The Department also reviews, suggests and makes suitable amendments in various

laws and rules concerned with women’s status for women’s empowerment. Integrated child protection scheme ( ICPS) has been started especially for the children for their integrated welfare and rehabilitation who are in the difficult situation.For improving sex ratio in age group 0-6 years,Beti Bachao Abhiyan (Save the Girl Child Campaign) is being implemented in the State.

 

Mangal Divas:-

Every Tuesday is celebrated as Janamdin. So this is called Mangal divas. Anna Prasana, Godbharai and kishori Scheme with the help of Health Department inform of small function. First Tuesday as divas for GOD BHARAI RASM, in which an expectant woman receives the traditional offerings of Sreephal,Sindoor, Chudi and Bindi, with the objective to take complete care of the pregnant woman’s diet, nutrition with timely medical support. During the function, 100 tablets of iron and folic acid are given to each pregnant woman to help them to sustain through a healthy and fit term of pregnancy. Second Tuesday is celebrated as Annaprashan divas with the objective to promote community participation in ICDS programmes and to decrease infant mortality rate. Additional nutritive supplement being provided to the child who has completed six months of agew under the programme. On third Tuesday, every child between the age group of 1 year to 6 years will celebrate his birthday at aanganwadi centers with other children. The aim of celebrating this as birthday to enhance the interpersonal relation between aanganwadi centers and the community and to make the ICDS more effective and powerful. Adolescent Girl Day is celebrated on fourth Tuesday with a cultural programmes such as singing, dancing, rangoli making etc, as well as general knowledge and sports competition. The rationale behind these cultural gatherings is to build awareness among girls the importance of nutrition, primary health care and vocation training of various trades, which help to improve their level of income and economy. In addition to this, health check up camps where distribution of iron and folic acid tablets are made is also a part of this celebration.

Sanjha Chulah-

  • for age group 3-6 years which provides cooked meal in morning breakfast and after
  • noon lunch. There is provision of third meal also for malnourished children. daily new and delicious supplementary food will be supplied at anganwadi.

Beti Bachao Abhiyan Yojna-

Present adverse sex ratio and the declining numbers of the girl child in the state is a serious cause for concern and warrant immediate corrective and concrete steps to halt this adverse trend. In this direction, state has started “ Beti Bachao Abhiyan (Save the Girl Child Campaign)” from 5th October 2011. The Women and Child Development Department is a nodal Department for this campaign. Under this campaign,various departments of the State government will act on 66 action points. The action points include observance of the Beti Diwas (Daughter’s day), invoking community participation through participation of various communities, including religious leaders, and panchayati raj representatives, celebrating the special achievements of the girls in the state, effective implementation of the

PCPNDT Act, providing education facilities to families with girl children only. Such families living below poverty line will be provided pension, on attaining the age of 55. These families will be provided other facilities like vocational training, concession in stamp duty on registration of homes in names of the relevant person/spouse etc.

Atal Bal Arogya Evam Poshan Mission:

The objective of the Mission is to provide an enabling mechanism for prevention and reduction of malnutrition and under five mortality rates in the children of the State through coordinated and concerted efforts of the key stakeholders.

The key mandate for the Mission is to improve child nutrition by:

  • supporting improved service delivery and quality of services in theIntegrated Child Development Services (ICDS) programme while establishing effective coordination with relevant Departments, with a focus on children under two years of age;
  • facilitating effective implementation of evidence based policy andoperational reforms for improving the coverage and quality of ICDS;
  • establishing institutional mechanisms for effective integrated planningand monitoring; and
  • Assisting DWCD to design operational framework for communalizationof ICDS services.

Targets-

  • Reducing mortality rate for children under five years (U5MR) from 94.2 to 60 per thousand live births by 2020
  • Reducing the percentage of underweight children under five years from60% to 40% by 2015 and further from 40% to 20% by 2020.
  • Reducing prevalence of Severe Acute Malnutrition (SAM) in childrenunder 5 years from 12.6% to 5% by 2015 and to negligible by 2020.comprehensive strategy and action plan for implementation and achievement of its goals.
  • To achieve the planned goals and objectives, mission has defined its strategy and micro planning. However, the strategy and action plan is limited to three years only and may be revisited as and when required.

Nirasrit Bal Grih Scheme:

Also known as Shelter less Children’s Home Scheme. The objective of the scheme is to ensure proper upbringing of shelter less children by giving them education and training, so that they grow up as productive and socially responsible citizens. A grant equivalent to 90% of Rs.250, i.e., Rs.225/- per child per month is provided to the voluntary organizations running such homes.

Bal Vikas Kendra Yojana- Also known as Child Development Centre Scheme. The object of  this scheme is to provide opportunities for creative development of children up to the age of 16 years. One such centre has been established at Jobat (Jhabua District) where children between 6 to16 years of age are admitted. Under this scheme a grant of Rs.500/- per child per month is provided to the voluntary organizations. 90% of the total expenditure is borne by the State government and remaining 10% by the concerned organization. Such establishment of child development centres are  mostly in tribal areas.

Jabali Scheme for Eradication of prostitution- (MPPCS 2010 mains)

The scheme is an attempt to discourage women/girls of adopting caste based prostitution prevalent among the Bedia, Banchada and Sansi communities. Different kinds of activities are being implemented, with the help of voluntary agencies, which revolve round the women/girls involved in the practice and their children. These are being organized in 5 stages as follow:

  • Ashram Shalas for education of children
  • Economic programme for prostitutes
  • Protection/shelter and rehabilitation homes for children
  • E.C. schemes for creation of public awareness
  • Schemes for health check-up and treatment of prostitutes

Presently, under this scheme, Ashram schools are being run in 6 districts –

Morena, Rajgarh, Sagar ,Raisen, Chhatarpur and Vidisha.

 

MP schemes on women empowerment:-

The cabinet has taken a decision establish ‘Directorate of Women Empowerment’ in the state by bifurcating the ‘Directorate of Women and Child Development’ for effective implementation of women’s empowerment schemes

–>sate government calender for year 2012 has slogan ‘Beti hae to Kal hae’

(Future is when Daughter is)

 

Ladli Laxmi Yojana- To benefit girls right from their births upto marriage

To create positive thinking about girls among masses, improvement insex ratio and encourage girls’ education and health

To make girls in the state a ‘Lakhpati’ at 21 years of ageGovernment deposits National Saving Certificate (NSC) worth Rs.6000/-p.a. for five years i.e. NSCs worth Rs.30,000/- are deposited in a girl’s name

Every girl child enrolled under Ladli Laxmi Yojana will get Rs.1.8 lakhwhen she attains the age of 21 years and had not married before 18 years of age

 

Mukhya Mantri Kanya Dan Yojana-

To provide financial assistance to poor, needy, destitute families for marrying off their daughters/ widows/ divorcees

Under this scheme, mass marriages are performed which increase socialharmony and curb unnecessary expenditure on weddings.

Beti Bachao Abhiyan- Initiated to balance sex ratio and foster awareness and sensitivity insociety 12 department have been given the responsibility of identified 66Activities. As part of its campaign, the government plans to promote frugal marriage ceremonies and encourage social boycott of people who take and give dowry

The multi-pronged approach will involve changing the pro-son mindsetand a combination of incentives and disincentives in favour of the girl child. Steps like reserving half the posts of teachers for women and pension to parents whose only children are daughters will be initiated besides promoting adoption of the girl child

Taking effective measures to prevent pre-natal tests and cases of foeticideTo protect girl child under PCNDT Act – In a first action of its kind in the state under the PC & PNDT Act, the name of a lady doctor, who had offered planning for male child has been removed from the register of MP Medical Council for a period of five years.

 

Gaon Ki Beti Yojana-

To provide financial assistance to motivate talented rural girls for higher education in government or private colleges Scholarship worth Rs.500/- p.m. to Ist division class 12th passed rural girlsfor 10 months

Pratibha Kiran Yojana-

To improve educational standards of Ist division class 12th passed girls belonging to urban BPL families

Rs.300/- p.m. for degree courses for 10 monthsAtal Bal Arogya Evam Poshan Mission-

Prevention and reduction of malnutrition & U5 mortality rates.

Targets- U5MR-  from 94 à 60% by 2020

To reduce under weight  children from 60 to 40 by 2015 and 40 to 20% by 2020

 

 

Usha Kiran Yojana-

For implementation of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005 (PWDVA), Madhya Pradesh launched Usha Kiran Yojana in the year 2008

The scheme’s objective is to help in reduction in cases of domesticviolence, awareness generation about the rights, building confidence and entire development of women, better rearing of children, and making happy and ideal home environment.

Fact- The State has an area of 308, 244 Sq. Km., making it the second largest state inthe country (9.38% of country’s total area). The State has a population densityof 236 persons as against that of the country at 382. The configuration ofadministrative units in the State includes 10 divisions, 51 districts, 342 Tehsils (sub-districts) and 313 Blocks with 89 (28%) of them being the Tribal Blocks.

There are as many as 476 towns and 54903 villages.


Bodies constituted, Policies, Programmes and Schemes for welfare of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes

Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment

The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is the nodal Ministry to oversee the interests of the Scheduled Castes. Though the primary responsibility for promotion of interests of the Scheduled Castes rests with all the Central Ministries in the area of their operations and the State Governments, the Ministry complements their efforts by way of interventions in critical sectors through specifically tailored schemes. The Scheduled Castes Development (SCD) Bureau of the Ministry aims to promote the welfare of Scheduled Castes through their educational, economic and social empowerment. Efforts made by State Governments and Central Ministries for protecting and promoting the interests of Scheduled Castes are also monitored.

National Commission for Scheduled Castes

National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) is an Indian constitutional body established with a view to provide safeguards against the exploitation of Scheduled Castes to promote and protect their social, educational, economic and cultural interests, special provisions were made in the Constitution.

National Commission for Scheduled Tribes

National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) is an Indian constitutional body was established through Constitution (89th Amendment) Act, 2003.

On the 89th Amendment of the Constitution coming into force on 19 February 2004, the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes has been set up under Article 338A on bifurcation of erstwhile National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to oversee the implementation of various safeguards provided to Scheduled Tribes under the Constitution.

 

 

Policies and programmes

For scheduled casts

Educational Empowerment

Various scholarships are provided to the students belonging to the Scheduled Castes (SCs) to ensure that education is not denied due to the poor financial condition of their families. These Scholarships are provided at both pre-matric and post-matric levels. Scholarships are also provided to SC students for obtaining higher education in India and abroad, including premier educational institutions. The Scholarships can broadly be classified into the following three types: 

Pre-Matric Scholarships

The objective of the pre-matric Scheme is to support the parents of SC children for educating their wards, so that the incidence of drop outs at this stage is minimized.

Post Matric Scholarship for Scheduled Caste Students (PMS-SC)

The Scheme is the single largest intervention by Government of India for educational empowerment of scheduled caste students. This is a centrally sponsored scheme. 100% central assistance is released to State Governments/UTs for expenditure incurred by them under the scheme over and above their respective committed liability.

Economic Empowerment

 National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation (NSFDC): Set up under the Ministry, to finance income generating activities of Scheduled Caste beneficiaries living below double Bodies constituted, Policies, Programmes and Schemes for welfare of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes,the poverty line limits (presently Rs 98,000/- per annum for rural areas and Rs 1,20,000/- per annum for urban areas). NSFDC assists the target group by way of refinancing loans, skill training, Entrepreneurship Development Programmes and providing marketing support through State Channelizing Agencies, RRBs, Public Sector Bank and Other Institutions

National Safai Karamcharis Finance and Development Corporation (NSKFDC): It is another corporation under the Ministry which provides credit facilities to beneficiaries amongst Safai Karamcharis, manual scavengers and their dependants for income generating activities for socio-economic development through State Channelizing Agencies.

Social Empowerment

The Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955

In pursuance of Article 17 of the Constitution of India, the Untouchability (Offences) Act, 1955 was enacted and notified on 08.05.1955. Subsequently, it was amended and renamed in the year 1976 as the “Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955”. Rules under this Act, viz “The Protection of Civil Rights Rules, 1977” were notified in 1977. The Act extends to the whole of India and provides punishment for the practice of untouchability. It is implemented by the respective State Governments and Union Territory Administrations. Assistance is provided to States/ UTs for implementation of Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955.

Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989: Assistance is provided to States/ UTs for implementation of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. Financial assistance is provided to the States/ UTs for implementation of these Acts, by way of relief to atrocity victims, incentive for inter-caste marriages, awareness generation, setting up of exclusive Special courts, etc. Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act, 2015 (No. 1 of 2016) was notified in the Gazette of India (Extraordinary) on 01.01.2016. The Amended Act came into force w.e.f 26.01.2016.

For scheduled tribes

Educational empowerment

Top Class Education for ST Students

This is a Central Sector Scholarship Scheme for ST students introduced from the academic year 2007-08 with the objective of encouraging meritorious ST students for pursing studies at Degree and Post Graduate level in any of the Institutes identified by the Ministry of Tribal Affairs for the purpose.

Eklavya Model Residential Schools

In the context of the trend of establishing quality residential schools for the promotion of education in all areas and habitations in the country, the Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) for ST students take their place among the Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalayas, the Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas and the Kendriya Vidyalayas. Eklavya Model Residential Schools (EMRS) are set up in States/UTs with grants under Article 275(1) of the Constitution of India.

Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojana

The Government of India, Ministry of Tribal Affairs has launched Vanbandhu Kalyan Yojana (VKY) for welfare of Tribals. VKY aims at creating enabling environment for need based and outcome oriented holistic development of the tribal people. This process envisages to ensure that all the intended benefits of goods and services under various programmes/schemes of Central as well as State Governments actually reach the target groups by convergence of resources through appropriate institutional mechanism.

Economic empowerment

Model Blocks

There are about 350 Blocks in the Schedule V areas where population to STs compared to total population of the Block is 50% or above. Despite several interventions in the past, these Blocks are still reeling under various facets of deprivation in so far as Human Development Indices are concerned. Through VKY, it is envisaged to develop these Blocks as model Blocks over the period of next five years with qualitative and visible infrastructural facilities.

Scheme of Marketing Development of Tribal Products or Produce

The Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Limited (TRIFED) was established in August 1987 by the then Ministry of Welfare, Government ofIndia , under the Multi State Cooperative Societies Act 1984 (which has now been replaced by the Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act, 2002) . TRIFED was established with the basic mandate of bringing about the socio-economic development of tribals of the country by institutionalizing the trade of Minor Forest Produce (MFP) and Surplus Agriculture Produce (SAP) collected/cultivated by them – because tribals are heavily dependent on these natural products for their livelihood. But in many cases they did not use to get remunerative prices due to middle-men and unscrupulous traders exploiting the naiveté of Tribals.

 

 

 

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