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Sunday, May 29, 2016, Jaistha 15, 1423 BS, Shaban 21, 1437 Hijri

Budget: Persons with disabilities deserve better attention
Published :Sunday, 29 May, 2016,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 14

Though there is no specific figure about the persons with disabilities in the country, inadequate budgetary allocation is depriving them of their basic rights forcing them compromise in every step of their lives.
Initiatives taken so far for the allocation for their education, health services and communication services friendly for the persons with disabilities are "very inadequate".
Such scenario came up in a recent research analysis book on budget titled 'National Budget 2016-2017: In Quest of People's Participation' published ahead of the upcoming national budget.
Parliamentary Caucus on National Planning and Budget, Centre on Budget and Policy, University of Dhaka and Democratic Budget Movement jointly brought out the research publication containing some key areas.
These three bodies urged the government to come up with a concept paper like 'budget thoughts for persons with disabilities' reflecting demand of those persons and how their requirement can be fulfilled with better attention to them.
Every year, the government takes up new projects for the development of persons with disabilities, but there is no required budget allocation for their development, the research analysis read.
For example, the paper mentioned, there is no allocation for implementation of the Persons with Disabilities Rights and Protection Act, 2013.
It refers to any person who is physically, psychologically, and/or mentally not functioning properly due to social/environmental barriers. Any person who cannot take part actively in society is considered to be disabled. Persons with disabilities have rights equal to all citizens, including fundamental basic human rights.
Through their research, the three organisations showed that the actual numbers of persons with disabilities are yet to be specified despite there have been five censuses in the country so far.
Even, non-government organisations have come up with various numbers of persons with disabilities.
The researchers analysed budget data from 2010-2016 and reached conclusion that allocation for the persons with disabilities is 'inadequate'.
Allocation for persons with disabilities become visible in a number of areas under the Ministries of Social Welfare, Women and Children Affairs, Liberation War Affairs and Food and Disaster Management, they found.
Quoting the ruling government's election manifesto, the researchers mentioned that the government made a commitment to provide special services and implement development programmes for the persons with disabilities. But the budget analysis says no adequate allocation is in place to implement the commitments, they said.
The three bodies recommended increased allocation for the persons with disabilities in the coming budget and adequate steps for their integrated development.
Some 6.1 percent and 9.1 percent respectively of the total national budget were allocated in the 2014-2015 and 2015-2016 fiscal years for social safety and empowerment sectors.
Allocation for programmes taken for the persons with disabilities came from the allocation made for the social safety and empowerment sector.     ?UNB

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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