The Social Justice and Empowerment Ministry, which caters to the welfare of the backward classes and those with disabilities, was allocated Rs 13,134 crore in the Union Budget 2022-23, a 12 percent increase from the last fiscal.
An amount of Rs 11,922 crore has been allocated for the Department of Social Justice and Empowerment and Rs Rs 1212 crore for the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities in the financial year 2022-23.
The Budget for 2022-23 saw an allocation of Rs 56 crore for the three national commissions — National Commission for Scheduled Castes, National Commission for Backward Classes and National Commission for Safai Karamcharis, as against the allocation of Rs 49 crore for 2021-22.
However, certain crucial schemes of the ministry like the Support for Marginalized Individuals for Livelihood & Enterprise (SMILE), Scheme for Economic Empowerment of DNT/NT/SNTs (SEED), Pradhan Mantri Dakshta Aur Kushalta Sampann Hitgrahi (PM DAKSH) Yojana and Self Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers saw a budget cut.
Under the Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, the budget for central sector schemes was allocated Rs 969.50 in 2022-23, a drop from Rs 1,395 crore in 2021-22.
Autonomous bodies — National University of Rehabilitation Science Disability Studies, Rehabilitation Council of India and Indian Sign Language, Research and Training Centre, Centre for Disability Sports, National Institute for inclusive and Universal Design, National Institute of Mental Health Rehabilitation and Support to National institutes — have been allocated Rs 431 crore for the next financial year.
The National Program for the Welfare of Persons with Disabilities was allocated Rs 635 crore in 2022-23. In 2021-22, an allocation of Rs 584 crore was made.