An Assessment of UPA-I through a Gender Budgeting Lens
This article evaluates the United Progressive Alliance government’s budgets over the past fve years through the lens of gender – both from reviewing the gender budgeting statements in union budgets since 2005-06 and assessing the allocations to major programmes and schemes across various sectors that affect women. First, although the gender budgeting statements still suffer from faws in methodology, it is clear that women are accorded low priority in government spending on development. Second, the creation of an independent Ministry of Women and Child Development has not resulted in any signifcant change in priorities for women. Third, a whopping 42% decline in allocations for schemes meant for women’s welfare under the MWCD in the union budget 2009-10 puts a big question mark on how serious the UPA is in its stated commitment to women’s empowerment.