The J&K state has achieved first rank in the country for having spent meager funds available with it for the all round development of adolescent girls by just utilizing 4.49 percent of funds under Rajiv Gandhi Scheme for empowerment of girls (SABLA).
Under this scheme the focus is on all around development of girls under the age of 11-18 years by making them self reliant, by improving their health and nutrition status, promoting awareness about health, hygiene, nutrition, adolescent reproductive and sexual health, family & child care and facilitating access to learning about public services through various interventions such as guidance and counselling.
According to experts the girls who are under the age of 18 years have more tendencies towards emotional attachments and shyness. They cater more for their families and friends and eventually lead them to think beyond their age which puts psychological pressure and stress on them leaning towards isolation, disturbances and causing a lot of harm to their physical and mental health.
As per official documents, the social ministry of previous NC led Coalition government whose minister was Sakina Itoo failed to utilize the available funds at their time the reasons best known to them.
As per documents State had received nearly Rs. 65.46 crore under this scheme but the government did not utilize the said amount at all for the welfare of the adolescent girls. By the end of year 2014, government of India had released Rs.292.12 crore to the state of Jammu and Kashmir under this scheme again but the government again did not made any effort to utilize the funds. Since the scheme has nutrition and non-nutrition component, the total funds available with the state government were 357.58crore. Out of these funds, J&K spend just Rs.16.05 crore in the last two financial years. As per the latest records there is only 1% percent of increase in the overall utilization of funds under this scheme.
State has nearly reported 66837 beneficiaries till now under this scheme but non utilization of funds by the government till date is not understandable. The government at present is yet to submit the details of utilization of funds under the scheme which covers the large number of beneficiaries in the state.
There is also under utilization on part of non- convergence with other departments such as Health, labour, Youth affairs, Education, PRIs. For vocational training the state failed to converge this scheme with NSDP and other existing schemes. For making girls entry into formal schools, coordination with education and literacy which was must was never established through this scheme.
As per latest inputs, 35.5% of village girls of the state leave schooling at the age 6 to 12 years and nearly 9.83% of city girls do the same. Under this scheme there is provision for these young girls to go to school but the government has not even made any substantial effort for them. There are nearly 22% of girls in the state who get married under the age of 17-18 years especially in rural areas but they dont have awareness about sexual health which is also covered by this scheme.
Government has not even set-up monitoring committees at State, District, Block and Village level to take stock of the progress of the scheme at different levels. Family welfare and Adolescent Reproductive Sexual Health (ARSH) which comes under the scheme SABLA is also failing as most of the women in the state have not received any sort of help or guidance under the ARSH programme. Despite of the underlying facts, the Scheme has totally failed for the girls of State as the government is not even bothered about it.
While making repeated phone calls the Minister for Health and Social welfare, Ms. Asiea Naqash couldnt be contacted for further details.
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