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বাংলা
Dhaka Tribune

Tk50 crore child budget lies idle

Update : 10 Dec 2015, 07:52 PM

Half the fiscal year has passed since the government approved the country’s first-ever child budget, but little has been done to implement it.

Negligence and a lack of policy have been blamed for the failure to act on the Tk50 crore allocation targeting at-risk children.

“It was a great move to introduce a special budget for the betterment of children. But there has been no implementation due to a lack of proper management,” said Alison Subrata Baroi, director of Supro, a network of grass roots non-government organisations.

The country’s most vulnerable children – those deprived of breastfeeding, infant nutrition and primary education – have been prioritised in the child budget.

But the lead implementation agency, the Women and Children Affairs Ministry, has not yet moved to implement the budget.  

When it was approved, the government said it planned to take on several welfare programmes that were to be administered by six ministries, headed by the Women and Children Affairs Ministry.

“It is true that we are yet to take any initiative to implement the budget. But the ministry has been thinking about what it can do for children’s welfare,” said Rahima Akter, senior assistant secretary of the children’s section of the Women and Children Affairs Ministry.

In reply to a query she said: “The government has decided to establish a separate department just for children’s affairs. That decision will become a reality very soon and it will then be easier to implement the child budget.”

Alison Subrata Baroi said: “When the government moves to implement the budget, I have suggested that they partner with social organisations. The implement of projects must also be transparent.”

A separate gender budget is currently being implemented along three major streams: increasing women’s empowerment and social status, increasing production capacity and participation of women in the labour market and income-generating activities and increasing opportunities for women.

Some 40 ministries are involved in implementing the gender budget.

But a study conducted by Supro has found that a lack of supervision in the allocation of the gender budget has meant that funds are being misspent. 

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