‘Health For All & Education for All’ is my priority, said Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram in his budget speech today while presenting the Budget 2013-14 in Lok Sabha. He diverted more funds to HRD, Health and SC & ST Development.
Rs 17,700 crore has been allocated to improve healthcare system for women and children. Rs 200 crore was given for Women & Child Development Ministry. Rs 15,000 crore will be spent on Water and Sanitation. In addition, Rs 13,215 crore has been allocated for Mid Day Meal (MDM) scheme. Rs 4,200 crore has been kept for the welfare of medical students. Rs 5000 crore has been allocated to NABARD to build cold storages and godowns.
The SC/STs and Minorities got a huge share in Union Budget 2013-14. Rs 41,564 crore has been allocated for Scheduled Caste development, while Rs 24,598 crore was diverted for Tribal Development. The Minority Affairs Ministry will get Rs 3,000 crore. The Finance Minister stressed on the need for a robust Food Security Bill and allocated Rs 10,000 crore for it. He also announced tax-free bonds for infrastructure sector.