The vision of the Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment is to build an inclusive society wherein members of the target group can lead productive, safe and dignified lives with adequate support for their growth and development. It aims to support and empower its target groups through programmes of educational, economic and social development and rehabilitation wherever necessary.
The mandate of the Department of Social Justice & Empowerment (SJ&E) is empowerment of the socially, educationally and economically marginalized section of the society including (i) Scheduled Castes (ii) Other Backward Classes (iii) Senior Citizens (iv) Victims of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse (v) Transgender Persons (vi) Beggars (vii) Denotified and Nomadic Tribes (DNTs) and (viii) Economically Backwards Classes (EBCs).
The Department through its programs and schemes strives to build an inclusive society wherein members of the target groups are provided adequate support for their growth and development. The policies and programmes of the Department aims towards:-
- Educational, economic and social empowerment of Scheduled Castes (SCs), Other Backward Classes (OBCs), Economically Backwards Classes (EBCs) and Denotified and Nomadic Tribes (DNTs).
- Supporting Senior Citizens by way of their maintenance, welfare, security, health care, productive and independent living.
- Prevention and Treatment of Alcoholism and Substance (Drugs) Abuse.
POST MATRIC SCHOLARSHIP FOR SCS
It has been decided to continue Post Matric Scholarship Scheme for SC students for three years, i.e., from 2017-18 to 2019-20 and additional allocation of funds for clearing the arrears under this Scheme. Under the Scheme, an amount of Rs. 3000 Cr. has been earmarked under BE for the year 2018-19.
NATIONAL OVERSEAS SCHOLARSHIP SCHEME
Proposal for Revision and Continuation of National Fellowship Scheme for Scheduled Caste students for 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20 has been approved by the Government.
Under the Scheme, an amount of Rs. 15.00 Cr. has been earmarked under BE for the year 2018-19.
SCHEME FOR TOP CLASS EDUCATION
Central Sector Scholarship Scheme of Top Class Education for Scheduled Caste Students has been revised in October, 2018 to cover more Institutions with increased number of slots (scholarships), and the revised Scheme is applicable from the academic session 2018-19. Now 220 Institutes including IITs, NITs, IIITs, IIMs, NIFTs, NLUs, AIIMS, Hotel Management Institutes, Aviation Training Institutes and Flying Training Institutes are empanelled under the Scheme
Total of 1500 fresh scholarships will be provided under the Scheme. Provision for 30% reservation has also been made for Girl Students.
The eligibility criteria has also been changed by increasing the total family income to Rs. 6.00 lakh per year from 4.50 lakh per year previously.
Under the Scheme, an amount of Rs. 35.00 Cr. has been earmarked under BE for the year 2018-19.
PRADHAN MANTRI ADARSH GRAM YOJANA
The Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana which was launched during 2009-10 (pilot phase) and expanded during 2014-15 (Phase-I) has now been further expanded and will cover 4484 SC majority villages (Phase-II). The salient features of the modified Scheme under the Phase-II are as under:
- Those districts are considered which have villages having total population ≥500 and with more than 50% persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes.
- Up to 10 such villages in descending order of SC population are proposed to be selected from each such district for implementation of the Scheme in this new Phase.
- For every new village selected, the Scheme provides for a total of Rs. 21 lakh of which Rs.20.00 lakh is for the ‘Gap-filling’ component and Rs.1.00 lakh is meant for ‘administrative expenses’ at the Centre, State, District and Village level in the ratio of 1:1:1:2.
- Additional funding of Rs. 10 lakh per village will be provided to Phase-I villages for bringing them at par with the Phase-II villages.
- There will be 50 discrete Monitorable Indicates covering 10 domains for intervention under the Scheme.
- The ‘Village Development Plan’ (VDP) will be based on the data collected as part of the Need Assessment exercise and it will have listing of both the cost based and costless efforts required for improvement in the village.
- For better project monitoring and implementation of the Scheme there will be convergence committees at State, District and Village Level in addition to Advisory and Monitoring Committees at Central and State Level.
- Funds allocated under the Scheme in 2018-19 are Rs. 70 crore.