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Social Sector

Why is Union Budget significant?

1. The Annual Budget 2021-22 provides a vision for long-term growth rather than mere annual account of expenditure.

2. The Budget has introduced several measures for expanding inclusive development strategies.

3. Schemes across health, education and infrastructure reflects this priority of inclusion and growth for all.

4. The Budget has proposed 34.5% increase in the capital expenditure compared to last year.

What are the proposals for different sectors?

Health:

1. The sector has seen an increase in allocation.

2. The Budget covers holistic healthcare – preventive, curative and well-being.

3. The PM Aatmanirbhar Swasth Bharat Yojana focusses on emergency response and preparedness with the objective of strengthening the health system.

4. The focus is on addressing infrastructure deficit.

5. Adequate amounts have been allocated for Covid vaccination drives.

6. There is a proposal to establish critical care hospitals and five regional branches of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).

7. Digitalisation of the Health sector would assume importance.

8. Health issues are linked with access to clean water (Jal Jeevan Mission) and nutrition.

9. Focus is made on Supplementary Nutrition Programme (SNP), Poshan Abhiyan and launch of Mission Poshan 2.0.

10. Funds have been allocated for Jal Jeevan Mission, access to clean air and Swachh Bharat Mission (for liquid waste management).

11. The budgetary allocations for AYUSH ministry and health research have gone up by 40% and 25% respectively.

12. However, it is important to evolve mechanisms for better coordination among various agencies to strengthen the health system.

Education

1. In 2021-22, education sector has received a boost in the budget in the form of funding.

2. The target is to implement National Education Policy 2020.

3. The Budget has announced partnership with NGOs and private sectors for setting up 100 Sainik schools in different states.

4. In the tribal areas 750 Eklavya Model Residential Schools are to be set up.

5. The national post-metric scholarship scheme for students from scheduled caste is provided.

6. Schemes like National Digital Educational Architecture (NDEAR) are a step closer to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4 – from quantitative to qualitative education.

7. Usage of Technology in schools and in their administration would strengthen the prospects for effective implementation of new educational policy.

8. The Budget proposes to establish a Higher Education commission (HEC).

Infrastructure

1. The budget has proposed setting up of a Development Finance Institution (DFI).

2. Higher capital expenditure for building highways is an important initiative.

3. Various steps have been announced for supporting the National Infrastructure Pipeline (NIP) including creation of institutional structures and monetisation of assets.