Children's share in 2022 Budget plummets to 11 year low

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Children's share in 2022 Budget plummets to 11 year low

  • Children in the country received the lowest share of allocation in the Budget in 11 years, according to an analysis by the NGO, HAQ-Centre for Child Rights.
  • The total allocation for children in Union Budget 2023 is ₹92,736.5 crore, against an allocation of ₹85,712.56 crore in the last Budget.
  • Though this is an increase of 8.19% in absolute terms, it’s not proportionate to the increase in the total expenditure in the Union Budget.
  • The share of the Budget for children is a meagre 2.35% of the Union Budget for the next fiscal, which is a reduction of 0.11 percentage points from this fiscal, says HAQ.
  • This is the lowest share children have received in the last 11 years.

Provisions in the Budget

  • The allocation for child health has decreased by 6.08%.
  • It has dropped from ₹3,727.57 crores in 2021-2022 to ₹3,501.11 crores for the next fiscal.
  • One of the most important child health schemes, the NRHM-RCH Flexi Pool, has observed a reduced allocation of 8.22% at ₹3,174.57 crores in the Union Budget 2022-23.
  • As far as child development programs are concerned, they have seen a drop of 10.97% in allocation for the next fiscal at ₹17,826.03 crore. These include supplementary nutrition and Anganwadi (daycare) services.
  • The share of child education in the overall Union Budget 2022-23 has witnessed only a marginal increase of 0.3 percentage points from 1.74% in the current fiscal to 1.73% for the next fiscal.
  • However, in absolute terms, the allocation has increased by 15.04% with ₹69,835.72 set aside, notes HAQ.
  • ‘One class, one TV channel' program has been increased from 12 to 200 TV channels to enable States to provide supplementary education in regional languages for Classes 1 to 12, studies have shown this is a difficult mode of learning for children.
  • Schemes for the protection and welfare of children clubbed under the Mission Vatsalaya of the Ministry of Women and Children received ₹1,472.17 crores. This is 65% more than this fiscal, but below the allocation of ₹15,000 crores in 2019-2020, before the scheme was restructured.
  • The FM said nearly two lakh anganwadis will be upgraded and will be “new generation anganwadis that have better infrastructure and audio-visual aids, powered by clean energy and providing an improved environment for early child development.”
  • However, the Saksham Anganwadi and Poshan 2.0 scheme, under which these works will be carried out, have received a negligible hike of 0.7%.


  • Special budgetary provisions have to be made for the promotion of child rights.
  • Government has to ensure that credible data is available at all levels about missing, illiterate, and malnourished children.
  • Efforts need to be made to ensure that every child reaches his/her full potential free from any and all forms of exploitation and abuse.