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Social Infrastructure

2.30 As there has been a major shift in the Ninth Five Year Plan towards the empowerment of these socially disadvantaged groups, all the welfare and development programmes were reoriented and revised in line with the Special Action Plan directed towards expansion and improvement of social infrastructure projects providing drinking water, housing, education, health care and sanitation in remote and inaccessible rural and tribal areas.

2.31 Education, which is the basic to all developmental pursuits, is a fundamental requirement for social development and has been accorded high priority In the Annual Plan 1998-99. The Post-Matric Scholarships (PMSs) for SC/ST students which is a major centrally sponsored scheme, was revised in 1995 to cover larger number of technical/non-technical courses thereby promoting higher education among SCs and STs. By the end of 1997-98, as many as 20.88 lakh SC/ST students were benefited with the PMSs. Similarly, under the scheme of Pre-Matric Scholarships for the children of those engaged in unclean occupations, scholarships are extended to the children of scavengers/sweepers and tanners to pursue school education and simultaneously divert them from the clutches of traditional occupations like scavenging. Under the scheme of `Hostels for SC/ST boys and girls', construction of hostels are taken up to extend hostel facilities for SC/ST boys and girls to pursue higher studies. During 1997-98, 143 SC/ST girls hostels and 86 SC/ST boys hostels were sanctioned. Special Education Development Programme for SC/ST girls in low literacy areas has been catering education facilities for improving their literacy level. In addition to these, the programmes of providing Ashram Schools for ST students, scholarships to SC/ST students to pursue higher studies and programmes to extend financial assistance to NGOs for setting up of educational complexes etc. will continue to receive priority attention in 1998-99 to improve the education status of SCs and STs. During 1997-98, the National Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSFDC), besides extending assistance to 14,144 SCs/STs to take up income generation and self-employment activities, also extended forward and backward linkages for credit and marketing facilities.

2.32 The Government is committed to complete eradication of the obnoxious practice of manual scavenging by the end of the Ninth Plan with a time bound programme. Thus, the National Scheme of Liberation and Rehabilitation has been accorded greater importance by providing more allocation in the Annual Plan 1998-99 to extend financial assistance, vocational training and other services to the liberated scavengers to take up alternative and viable economic activities.

2.33 In view of the precarious living conditions of the primitive tribal groups, a new central sector scheme of development of Primitive Tribal Groups has been introduced in the Ninth Plan to ensure welfare and all-round development of these groups, specially through extension of primary education, health services and support through income and employment generation programmes.

2.34 Socio-economic development of Other Backward Classes (OBCs), especially their educational development has been given high priority in the Ninth Plan. During the Annual Plan 1998-99, four new Centrally Sponsored Schemes providing pre-metric and post-matric Scholarships, boys and girls hostels and residential schools for OBC students have been introduced. Besides, a new central sector scheme of grant-in-aid to voluntary organisations for OBCs' development has also been initiated during 1998-99 so as to encourage/involve the voluntary sector, for promoting income generating activities.

2.35 Keeping in view of the prevailing educational backwardness amongst the minorities, Maulana Azad Education Foundation has been encouraged for extending services/support to promote education amongst the educationally backward minorities with special focus on girl child. Pre-examination coaching centres continued to get financial support to impart necessary coaching and training to minority students for appearing In competitive/entrance examinations.

2.36 Social Welfare programmes takes care of welfare, development and rehabilitative needs of i) persons suffering from visual, orthopaedic, hearing and mental disabilities, ii) social deviants namely juvenile delinquents/vagrants, drug addicts, alcoholics, sex workers, etc. and iii) the other disadvantaged namely, the aged, destitutes, street children, children in adverse circumstances, etc. so as to enable them to overcome their social, economic and physical handicaps. During the Annual Plan 1998-99, efforts will be made to implement all the welfare and development programmes of the social welfare sector in line with the objectives of the Ninth Five Year Plan by adopting threefold strategy specific to each individual group viz., empowering the persons with disability, reforming the social deviants and caring for the other disadvantaged.

2.37 The major policy thrust towards the disabled has been to make as many disabled persons as independent, self-supporting and contributing members of the society. Empowering the persons with disabilities being the new initiative in the Ninth Plan, in accordance with the recently enacted Persons with Disabilities (Equal opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act (PDA), 1995, efforts will be made to create and develop not only the necessary institutional mechanism but also to ensure that much needed services reach the intended beneficiaries in the rural areas.

2.38 Special efforts will also be made during 1998-99 to strengthen/expand the services for prevention and early detection of disabilities, education and training, employment and rehabilitation in rural areas to make as many disabled persons as active, self-dependent and productive members of the society. The six national institutes will continue to serve as apex organisations for manpower development, education, training, vocational guidance, counselling, research and development of service models.

2.39 The District Rehabilitation Centres continue to provide a package of rehabilitation services to the disabled persons in rural and remote areas. Under the scheme to Promote Voluntary Action for the Persons with Disabilities, financial support is being provided to voluntary organisations for extending services through vocational training centres, special schools and counselling centres. Voluntary Organisations will be encouraged for the welfare and development of persons with disabilities specially in rural areas and in the regions where voluntary action is weak.

2.40 To provide full coverage of the services under Juvenile Justice Act, 1986, about 280 Observation Homes, 251 Juvenile Homes, 36 Special Homes and 46 After Care Homes were supported during 1997-98. Special problems of the juvenile delinquents and the children in difficult circumstances will be addressed squarely by ensuring effective implementation of the above Act and other curative and rehabilitative measures in the year 1998-99.

2.41 With the changes in socioeconomic scenario in the country, various problems of drug addicts, street children and elderly and social maladjustment leading to juvenile delinquency/vagrancy/crime are increasingly exposed in both rural and urban areas. The programme for the street children will be restructured keeping in view the `Child's Right' by involving the voluntary organisations. To extend much needed care and services to the aged, 186 old age homes, 283 day care centres, 28 mobile units and 2 projects of non-institutional services for older persons have been established in different parts of the country during 1997-98. The National Policy on Older Persons has been finalised for extending financial support, medical facilities, shelters, access to information the older persons.

2.42 The Special Action Plan for Health envisages expansion and improvement of the health services; no specific targets have been set for the health sector. The current status, problems, proposed intervention programmes, targets set and monitoring mechanism in health sector including health nutrition, family welfare and ISM and H were reviewed and an operational strategy under the SAP for the health sector was drawn up. The strategy includes: (a) State specific strategies for fully operationalising the on-going programmes in health, nutrition and family welfare. (b) Reorganisation of the primary health care infrastructure, redeployment of manpower in urban and rural areas; providing additional funds to fill critical gaps; improving referral linkages; improving efficiency and accountability. (c) Investment in health manpower development in modern and Indian system of medicine so that there are adequate manpower of appropriate quality and quantity; continuing education for professionals, and paraprofessionals to update their knowledge and skills, providing appropriate programme and people orientation. (d) Effective prevention and control of communicable and noncommunicable diseases; (e) providing appropriate care at primary, secondary and tertiary level institutions; (f) Improved monitoring of ongoing and effecting mid-course corrections.

2.43 Currently the major nutrition related public health problems facing the country are: Chronic energy deficiency and under-nutrition; Chronic energy excess and obesity and micro-nutrient deficiencies. Efforts are underway to achieve (i) freedom from hunger through increase in food production, its effective distribution and improvement in purchasing power of the people; (ii) reduction in under-nutrition and its health consequences through universalization of Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS); and (iii) prevention, early detection and effective management of micro-nutrient deficiencies and the associated health hazards.

2.44 Number of beneficiaries under the Integrated Child Development Services Scheme (ICDS) has increased from 5.7 million children and 1.2 million mothers in 1985 to 18.5 million children and 3.7 million mothers in 1996.

2.45 Health and nutritional status of the population living in KBK districts continues to be poor due to poverty, low income, lower levels of literacy, periodic drought, endemic malaria, inadequate access to health services and lack of health awareness especially in tribal areas. Health is one of the sectors covered under the Long-Term Action Plan (LTAP) for KBK Districts of Orissa (1995-2002) which is being monitored by the Planning Commission.

2.46 The major thrust areas of intervention include: (a) greater access to public health services through mobile health clinics/units. (b) improved availability of health staff in existing health institution. (c) prevention, detection and prompt treatment of malaria under the National Anti-malaria Programme. (d) prompt and effective treatment of Tuberculosis through Revised National TB programme. (e)emergency Feeding Programme for the old, infirm and the destitute.

2.47 Containing the population growth is one of the major objectives of the Ninth Plan. The Reproductive and Child Health Programme initiated in Oct, 1997 aims to achieve this objective through meeting all the felt needs for contraception of reducing infant and maternal mortality so that there is reduction in the desired level of fertility. Efforts were also made to undertake need assessment and area specific micro-planning , improve quality and coverage of services

2.48 Review of performance under family welfare programme indicate a marginal improvement in new acceptors of contraception as compared to previous year, but the figures are still less than those during 1994-95. The coverage both under routine and pulse polio immunization fall short of 100%. Among the poorly performing States Bihar and UP have shown a substantial decline as compared to their own past performance. Deptt . of Family Welfare is currently taking steps to ensure all round improvement in performance.

2.49 As part of National Policy, universalisation of elementary education received overriding priority. According to the Sixth All India Education Survey (1990-93), 8.76 lakh habitations covering 94 per cent of rural population of the country had schooling facilities at the primary stage within one kilometer distance. 7.26 lakh habitations covering 83.98 per cent of the rural population had middle school within three kilometer distance. The enrolment of SCs and STs has increased considerably and they are now more or less in proportion to their population at the primary level. Under elementary

2.50 The National Literacy Mission (NLM) was set up in 1988 with the objective of making 80 million persons literate in the age group of 15-35 by the year 1995. Subsequently, the goal was revised to cover 100 million persons by the year 1998-99. Recent NSSO data show that India has achieved 62 per cent literacy in 1997. Till March, 1998, 447 districts have been covered under the literacy programme. Of these, 215 districts had total literacy campaign, 173 had the post literacy phase and 59 had continuing education programme. Under the literacy programme, approximately 68.57 million people have been made literate of which 60 per cent were females. The percentage of SCs and STs in total literate was 22.40 and 13.20 respectively. The total literacy campaign has been continued as dominant strategy of the National Literacy Mission. Use of traditional and electronic media for creating environment for literacy is being advocated. An effort is made to develop instructional material in regional languages and local dialects based on the local needs of the population. Topics like value oriented education, spiritual education, upgradation of marketing skills, nutrition, health, human resource development and mother and child care and consumers rights are being included in the curriculum. NGOs have been involved for experimentation and innovativeness with adequate financial support to them.

2.51 In Secondary Education, during 1997-98, the focus was laid to improve education in the areas of science, population, environment, value education, educational technology, physical education and sports etc. A total of 875 Kendriya Vidyalayas covered eight lakh children of transferable Central Government employees including that of defence personnel. The scheme of Navodaya Vidyalayas continued to provide education up to senior secondary stage with the objective of providing high quality modern education having strong cultural values to the talented children predominantly from rural areas irrespective of their socio-economic background. During 1997-98, 219 Navodaya Vidyalayas were upgraded to Senior Secondary stage. The existing Computer Literacy Programme (CLP) continue to be provided in 103 Navodaya Vidyalayas. The National Open School covered about 80,000 persons in various courses during the year 1997-98. The main emphasis continued to be on consolidation and qualitative improvement of the programme of vocationalisation of secondary education. in the Annual Plan 1998-99, for improvement of science education in the country, voluntary organisations are encouraged to take up science education programmes for talented students from rural areas. The scheme of Integrated Education for the Disabled Children is being expanded to cover more children under the programme. Effort is being made to ensure that every disabled child has access to free education until the age of 18 years as envisaged under the `Persons with Disabilities Act' 1995'. More voluntary organisations are being encouraged to take up this scheme. Efforts are being made to utilise modern telecommunications and computer technology in making its instructional design and delivery more effective and accessible through a nationwide telecommunication network with uplinking facility and telecommunication channels. States are being encouraged to set up `State Open Schools' on the national model and by developing education facilities in regional languages to strengthen the access to secondary education.

2.52 During 1997-98, 59 lakh persons were enrolled in higher education. The share of women in total enrolment at the beginning of the year was about 23 per cent. Distant education accounts for merely 12 per cent of the total enrolment in higher education and is the emerging reality in the educational scene of the country. The major thrust area in higher education relate to vocationalisation of education at the first degree level, COSIST programmes, Orientation of teachers through Academic Staff Colleges, spread of Mass Communication and Educational Technology Network, Computer Education, Support for education of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, minorities and weaker sections among the minority communities.

2.53 The major programme for the development of technical education continued through 1997-98. Six Indian Institutes of Technology continued to provide excellent facilities at undergraduate and post graduate levels and other research programmes. The four Indian Institutes of Management continued to provide high quality management education through teaching, training, research and consultancy. As on March, 1998, 442 community polytechnics were functioning all over the country out of which 83 are exclusively for women. Community Polytechnics have made significant contribution towards promoting transfer of a large number of tested and approved items of technology to the rural areas including windmills, smokeless chulahs, rural latrines, solar appliances, agricultural implements etc. The scheme of Community Polytechnics had continued as a support system for technology transfer, training and S and T awareness for the rural community. Emphasis has now been shifted to demand based vocational courses especially in the service sector. Further, stress is being laid on practical knowledge as well. Efforts are also being made to encourage NGOs wherever there is no community polytechnic to take up this responsibility.

2.54 Enrolment of girls at primary, middle and high and higher secondary stage was 43.38, 39.83, 37.10 and 35.32 per cent respectively. Overall (including college and technical education) share of girls enrolment in all stages worked out to 41.32 per cent. The National Agenda for governance, under article 16 envisaged provision of free education for girls upto college level including professional courses so as to empower women. An in-depth review of District Primary Education Programme (DPEP) conducted during September-October, 1997 revealed reduction of gender and social inequalities. The index

of gender equity stood at more than 95 in 18 out of 36 districts. The Mahila Samakhya Programme has been operating in 5000 villages of 35 districts spread over eight States which are educationally backward. The basic philosophy in Mahila Samakhya approach is the understanding that women must identify their problems and evolve solutions on their own. As a sequel to the Prime Minister's announcement on the country's Independence Day, 1998, a scheme of Balika Samriddhi Yojana has been drawn to provide free education for girls upto college level including professional courses.

2.55 The housing needs of all the segments of the population will have to be met; The Ninth Plan focuses special attention on households at the lower end of the housing market. The priority groups identified for such support are people living below poverty line, SC/STs, disabled, freed bonded labourers, slum dwellers and women headed households. As facilitator, Government would create an environment in which access to all the requisite inputs will be in time, in adequate quantum and of appropriate quality and standards.

2.56 During 1998-99 (upto Sept. 1998), under EWS housing scheme 50307 dwelling units have been constructed against the target of 216700 dwelling units. Like-wise, under LIG Housing scheme achievements have been 7202 dwelling units as against the target of 57899 dwelling units.

2.57 Whereas provision of safe drinking water and sanitation is a State subject and primary responsibility of the State Governments, the Central Government has been implementing a large scale Centrally Sponsored Scheme in the case of rural water supply, viz. Accelerated Rural Water Supply Programme (ARWSP), currently known as Rajiv Gandhi National Drinking Water Mission; As on 1.4.1998, there were 56269 left over "Not Covered" (NC) and 313473 "Partially Covered" (PC) habitations out of a total of 1430663 identified habitations.

2.58 The concept of total environmental sanitation needs to be adopted. As the Government scheme of low-cost sanitation is mainly for the people below the poverty-lines, it may be necessary to ensure alternative delivery system for others through "Rural Sanitary Mart", a commercial enterprise with social objective, which apart from being a sales outlet also serves as a counselling-centre as well as a service-centre.

2.59 Due to rapid urbanisation and ever increasing population of the cities and towns, their demand for adequate drinking water supply and hygienic disposal of liquid and solid wastes is assuming greater importance year after year.

2.60 While the coverage of urban population by protected water supply is estimated to be around 90% at the beginning of the Ninth Plan, this however, does not truly reflect the deprivation of the poor, particularly those living in slums. Similarly in the case of urban sanitation, though about 46% of the population have provision for sanitary excreta disposal facilities at the beginning of the Eighth Plan, only 29% had sewerage system. The balance had only low-cost sanitation facilities.

2.61 With a view to reduce migration of population from rural areas and smaller towns to large cities, to generate employment opportunities in the small and medium towns, and to provide infrastructural facilities in these towns, the Centrally Sponsored Scheme of Integrated Development of Small and Medium Towns (IDSMT) was initiated during the Sixth Five Year Plan.

2.62 During 1997-98, the sum of Rs. 154.20 crore has been provided for urban transport. The Union Cabinet had given its `in principle' approval in July, 1994 for the introduction of an Integrated Multi-modal Mass Rapid Transit System (MRTS) for Delhi. However, the investment proposals for the first phase of Delhi MRTS were approved by the Union Government in September, 96 only. The project envisages introduction of a metro rail system of about 55.3 kms. comprising 11 kms of underground rail corridor and 44.3 kms of elevated-cum-surface rail corridors. The total cost of the project is estimated at about Rs. 4860 crore at April 1996 prices.

2.63 A Committee was set up in the Planning Commission in February 1997 to review and rationalise the various Centrally Sponsored Schemes for Poverty Alleviation and Employment generation. Based on the recommendation of the Committee Swarna Jayanti Shahari Rozgar Yojana (SJSRY) came into operation w.e.f. 1.12.97 and the above mentioned three schemes viz., NRY, PMIUPEP and UBSP were phased out and the allocated amount for these three schemes were transferred to SJSRY.


2.64 One of the principal objectives of the Ninth Plan is to achieve near full employment by the year 2007. There has been significant growth in employment over the years. According to the National Sample Survey conducted during July 1995-June 1996, the incidence of unemployment has declined from 1.90 per cent to 1.64 per cent over a period of two years from June 1994 and it is estimated that the rate of overall unemployment will come down from 1.87 per cent in the Eighth Plan to 1.66 per cent in the Ninth Plan. A relatively high rate of economic growth combined with an employment intensive sectorial growth yielding a higher aggregate employment elasticity is necessary for achieving the desired rate of employment growth. The plan strategies focus not only on creation of new jobs but also on augmentation of existing employment in terms of increased productivity and incomes through sustainable technological intervention.

2.65 A committee under the chairmanship of Member, Planning Commission has been set up to go into the aspects of creation of 100 million additional jobs in the next ten years. In addition to generation of new employment opportunities of the order of 10 million per year which will take care of the open unemployment, self employment in the traditional and unorganised sectors and improved access to credit and markets would be necessary to ensure that the underemployed and those employed at very low level of earning are able to raise their productivity and income levels.

2.66 The primary objective of the Ninth Plan is to generate greater productive employment in the growth process itself. The growth in employment in the organised sector came down from 1.51 per cent in 1996 to 1.09 per cent in 1997. The slow growth of employment has been taken care by the higher growth in unorganised sector. Private sector recorded a growth of about 5.6 per cent as against a negative growth of 0.2 per cent in the public sector in the corresponding period.

2.67 Craftsman Training scheme and Apprenticeship Training programme are two important programmes for skill development to take up jobs or self employment aimed at improving productivity and quality of life. The National Vocational Training System (NVTS) adopted in the Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) and other industrial establishments seeks to provide training for developing the skills for those entering the labour force. There has been a significant growth and expansion in the network of ITIs which have grown to 3665 in the public and private sector with an enrolment capacity of 5.73 lakh as on December 1997 and another 2.59 lakh under the Trade Apprentice Scheme.

2.68 Women constitute a significant part of the workforce. The national Vocational Training Institute and the Regional Vocational Training Institutes in different parts of the country impart basic and advanced level vocational training to women. A Centrally Sponsored Scheme "Establishment of new ITIs in the North Eastern States and in Jammu and Kashmir" for women has been proposed in the Ninth Plan.

2.69 In the changed economic scenario, where displacement of labour is inevitable and existing labour force is expected to get retrenched, a special training scheme is also being implemented so that the workers thus retrenched are not affected adversely. This scheme is funded out of National Renewal Fund (NRF).

2.70 Under the National employment service, a network of 934 employment exchanges spread over the country and established as on December 1997, continue to provide placement and vocational guidance services to job seekers registered with them. The employment service continue to pay special attention to the needs of the weaker section of society. A comprehensive package of services to handicapped is also being provided by 17 vocational rehabilitation centres. Vocational guidance and training in confidence building is provided to job seekers belonging to the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes at 22 coaching cum guidance centres.

2.71 Schemes relating to industrial relations, occupational safety and health, women and child labour, welfare of unorganised labour and workers education are included under labour welfare. At present, there are 12 Central Government Industrial Tribunals (CGIT). During 1998-99, two more CGITs have been sanctioned. The schemes relating to occupational safety concentrate on improvement of work environment, man-machine interface, control and prevention of chemical hazards, development of protective gears and equipment, training in safety measures and development of safety and health information system.

2.72 The existence of child labour in hazardous industries is a great problem in India. Efforts are underway to modify the existing National Child Labour Project during the Ninth Plan. Programmes for women labour include action oriented projects and studies,organisation of child care centres and welfare projects for women engaged in construction work.

2.73 A Centrally sponsored scheme has been launched in 1998-99 for the identification, release and rehabilitation of bonded labour. Since inception of the scheme in 1978-79, 2.51 lakh bonded labour have been identified and 2.31 lakh have been rehabilitated. In the recent survey conducted, about 29,000 bonded labour have been further identified for rehabilitation.

Annual Plan 1998-99

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