NAC suggests Dalit sub-Plan, law to monitor schemes under it

New Delhi: The Sonia Gandhi-led National Advisory Council has asked the Centre to enact a law to monitor government schemes under a special Dalit sub-plan proposed by it.

The advisory panel, in its draft recommendations on SC sub-Plan, has suggested that the Planning Commission set aside a portion of the plan outlays of Centre and states equivalent to the proportion of SCs in the population at the national and state level. These funds, set apart before plan outlays are allocated to any ministry, would form part of the Scheduled Caste Sub Plan (SCSP), said the recommendations of the NAC Working Group on Dalit Issues co-chaired by Harsh Mander and Farah Naqvi.

"The SCSP set apart as above is not meant to be parked with any ministry, but needs to be allocated to the ministries and departments for implementing such schemes which are directly benefiting SC individuals, households or SC localities," it said. The working group has asked the Centre to pass an enabling law to monitor the schemes undertaken by the special Dalit plan, track the amounts spent and facilitate social auditing.

It said schemes like boarding schools for Dalit boys and girls must be implemented in villages, towns and cities. The working group also called for reforms in the pre-matric and post-matric scholarship schemes of the Centre to extend support to all students belonging to scheduled caste, except those excluded on well-defined criteria. "The quantum of support should enable the students to access quality education either in public or private sector," the working group said.