The Right to Food campaign voiced its letdown over the Union Budget 2023; called it a ‘Betrayal to the people of India’.
Budget 2023-24: While raising concerns over the reduction of spending by the government for various social sector provisions, the body has urged the Opposition parties to raise these issues during the discussions on the Budget in Parliament.
The Right to Food campaign voiced its letdown over the Union Budget 2023-24 rolled out on February 1 and called it a ‘Betrayal to the people of India’.
The campaign has also requested the government reconsider the allocations made in a bid to ‘meet the basic constitutional obligations of any democratically elected government, as well as towards a more equitable growth path.’
“India is facing serious inequality where only 5 per cent of Indians own more than 60 per cent of the country’s wealth while 50 per cent of India’s population possesses only three per cent of the wealth according to Oxfam India’s report. In this context, spending on social protection schemes such as the PDS, anganwadis, pensions and MGNREGA became especially important. But the Government of India has betrayed the hardworking people of this country by showing no sense of accountability in this year’s Union Budget. The Right to Food Campaign condemns the sheer insensitivity of the Central Government’s policy decision which will result in reducing the ration entitlement of 81 crore people by 50%,” the Right to Food campaign said in a statement.
“MGNREGA which directly provides employment and also helps create rural assets has been immensely decreased in this year’s budget reflecting a direct attack on the millions of NREGA workers. Despite over 216,000 crores of pending wages, the allocation in this year’s budget under MGNREGA is only 60,000 crore rupees, therefore the pending liabilities would likely go up to 25,000 crores. The People’s Action for Employment Guarantee (PAEG) and NREGA Sangharsh Morcha in their position demanded that the budget of NREGA for the year 2023-2024 should be 2,73,000 crores rupees with more work days. NREGA continues to be underfunded which will lead to massive delays in wage payments,” the statement said.