Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that the State Government was sensitive towards the poor and weaker sections of the society and effective steps have been taken for the upliftment of these sections. He was presiding over the concluding session of one day seminar on “The Role of SC Commission in Solution of Schedule Castes issues after 75 years of Independence”, organized by the Himachal Pradesh State Commission for Scheduled Castes here today.
Chief Minister said that the population of scheduled castes in the state was around 25.19 percent as per the 2011 census and holistic development of the state could be possible only when there was all-round and balanced development of all the communities and areas.
He said that the State Government had always given top priority to fulfill the basic needs like livelihood and housing of all the communities and had ensured that everyone gets better and equal opportunities for education, health and development.
Jai Ram Thakur said that the State Government had been implementing the Scheduled Castes Development Program with an objective of accelerating the economic and social development of the Scheduled Castes.
He said that a budget provision of Rs. 2400.12 crore had been made under the Scheduled Castes Sub-Plan and Rs. 148 Lakh had been made under Follow up Programme to achieve the target of 8244 beneficiaries in this financial year. Total 20399 people have benefited under this scheme since the year 2018.
Chief Minister said that the state government has increased the budget allocation for the empowerment of Scheduled Castes, Other Backward Classes, Minorities and Specially abled, by 113 percent in the last four years. As compared to the budget amount of Rs.537.06 crore allocated in the financial year 2017-18, a provision of Rs. 1145.21 crore has been made this year, added the Chief Minister. He said that a budget provision of Rs. 75.00 had been made this year for the construction of houses under the Swarna Jayanti Ashray Yojana, to achieve the target of construction of 5000 houses and a provision of Rs. 310 lakh for Inter Caste Marriage Scheme.
Jai Ram Thakur said that 348 villages were also selected in 2018-19 under Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojna phase-2, besides this, 213 villages under Gram Vikas Yojna. So far 167 villages have been declared as Adarsh Grams under Phase II. He said that ‘Mukhyamantri Adarsh Gram Yojana’ was being implemented on the lines of Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana, under which Rs. 96.26 crore has been released so far, which has benefitted about 700 villages.
Chief Minister said that various scholarship schemes were being implemented for providing scholarship to students of SC communities at school and college level.
Jai Ram Thakur said that people of all communities and castes in Himachal Pradesh were contributing towards the all-round development of the state. The provisions of various Acts are being implemented effectively to provide social justice to the Scheduled Caste community. He said that due to concerted efforts of the State Government, there has been an unprecedented change in the attitude of the society.
The Chief Minister also released the book Safarnama written by Dr. Karam Chand on the occasion.
Earlier, Chairman Himachal Pradesh State Scheduled Castes Commission and former MP Virender Kashyap welcomed the Chief Minister and detailed about the activities of Commission and deliberations held in the four sessions of the seminar.
Member of Commission Jagjit Bagga presented a vote of thanks.
Member of H.P. State Scheduled Castes Commission, Ajay Chauhan, Member HPPSC Dr. Nain Singh, Chairman of Himcofed Kaul Negi, President Himachal Pradesh Rural Development Bank, Sashibala, representatives of various organizations were also present on the occasion.