As ‘Dalit Bandhu’ scheme is on hold due to election code in Telangana for the implantation. In Indian society, caste-based distinctions are subtle, but quite common; considering that the caste factor is an undisputed, historical truth. Society, intertwined with relations that emerged along with agriculture-related trades, gradually became caste-oriented.

Revolutionary changes took place in agricultural and irrigation sectors, marking a paradigm shift from primitive methods of making the water flow to modern methods of lifting the water. In the process, animals for thousands of years contributed more to agriculture than human beings.  Animal wealth came to be regarded as precious.

The civilised society, which took care of animals (domesticated) from birth, however, had given the responsibility of their death rituals to Dalits. The Dalits took care of the last rites of animals as well as human beings. It is inhuman to keep such community away from society, calling them untouchables. “We do not know who called and named them as untouchables.

It is unpardonable that Dalits were kept away from the habitations and were subject to discrimination as untouchables. This is a shameful act, for which we all should feel extremely ashamed. At least now, we have to rectify this historical mistake,” Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has remarked on many occasions.

Mahakavi Gurram Joshua said, “India is indebted to the services of the Dalits.” The Telangana State government, right from Day 1 under the leadership of KCR, has been implementing a plethora of schemes and programmes for Dalits with a view that, regardless of how much is done for the community, it would still be less for the community that had sacrificed utmost for the progress of human society. KCR knew that, unlike other communities, the Dalit community had been subject to both economic and social discrimination. Hence, KCR became a ‘Dalit Bandhu’.

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Going by Telangana’s programmes for Dalits, and the manner in which funds are being released by the state government for various schemes, it is clear that the state has become a role model for other states in the country.
Under the SC Special Development Fund Act, 15.45 per cent of all welfare and developmental schemes were allocated to the SCs. From 2014-15 till date, the state government has spent Rs 56,110.77 crore.

SC Students pursuing higher education abroad were given Rs 10 lakh under the BR Ambedkar Overseas Scholarship and the amount has since been enhanced to Rs 20 lakh. For this overseas scholarship, the state government had increased the income limit from Rs 2 lakh to Rs 5 lakh per year and 735 students have been enrolled abroad from the academic year 2014-15 till date.  The state government has spent Rs 113.93 crore.

The number of SC Residential Institutions has increased from 134 to 268. Under the Chief Minister’s instructions, 30 Residential Degree Colleges were opened for poor SC women.  About 17,014 girls are studying in these institutions. The government has spent Rs 4,884 crore and benefitted 20 lakh students over the past seven years. From the inception of the State till date, the state government has spent Rs 3,075.91 crore for post-matric scholarships given to 17,58.91 SC students.

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Under pre-matric scholarships, to bring down the drop-out rate in schools, Rs 280.52 crore was spent towards 4,85,603 students. The grant for best available schools has been increased from Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000.

The state government is running 873 hostels — 669 for pre-matric, 204 for post-matric students. In all, 5,05,587 students have taken shelter in government hostels from the formation of the state till date, and Rs 1,751.04 crore was spent towards the purpose.

Diet charges were also increased substantially. Fine rice is supplied to SC hostels. SC Study Circles were increased from one to 11. Through SC Study Circles, 11 were selected to the Civil Services and 1,196 for other exams.
KCR has introduced several schemes and programmes for the welfare and development of SCs, and, from 2014 till date, Rs 760.22 crore was spent.

The government had purchased 16,972,35 acres and distributed it among 6,929 Dalit families. Dalit families in the state are given 101 units of power free of cost. The government has spent from the state’s formation till date Rs 247.90 crore to benefit 16.36 lakh Dalit families. In all, 1,56,100 SC beneficiaries were given financial assistance, ranging from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 12 lakh under the SC Economic Support Scheme. From 2014-15 to 2020-2021, the state government spent Rs 1947.03 crore.

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Under the Kalyan Laxmi Scheme, from 2014, 1,85,002 families were given Rs 1,443.35 crore benefit under the scheme. Under the first phase of Dalit Bandhu, in all the mandals in the Huzurabad Assembly Constituency, four mandals in four other constituencies, Dalit families were given Rs 10 lakh financial grant.

For the Dalit Bandhu Scheme, in 2021-2022 Annual Budget, Rs 1,000 crore funds were allocated and by Sept 2021 Rs 2,007.60 crore was released. The state government wants the Dalit Bandhu Scheme to ignite the social consciousness to bring about qualitative change in the lives of Dalits.

For the effective implementation of the Dalit Bandhu Scheme, the state government has constituted committees from mandal, district to the State level. These committees will work as a bridge between the government and the beneficiaries and will help in the successful implementation of the scheme with their guidance and suggestions.

KCR has been reviewing the scheme from time to time and making the administration implement the programme in letter and spirit. It is indeed a moment of pride for everyone in the state that the schemes, programmes and innovative ideas of KCR are being successfully implemented, with the rest of the country emulating and replicating Telangana’s schemes. It is also a moment of pride for the entire country. #KhabarLive #hydnews


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