Ctg dialogue stresses budget for marginalised | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 29, 2011 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, April 29, 2011

Ctg dialogue stresses budget for marginalised

The government should prepare a decentralised budget to uplift the livelihood and economic condition of the marginalised people, speakers said at a dialogue in Chittagong yesterday.
The demand came at a dialogue titled “National budget for 2011-12: a democratic budget and the rights of the marginalised community people” organised by Democratic Budget Movement in collaboration with Young Power in Social Action (YPSA) and ActionAid Bangladesh at a local hotel at Agrabad in the city.
For effective implementation, a democratic budget should be based on the opinions of the rural and marginal communities like the challenged, indigenous, dalits (outcaste), farmers, weavers and sex workers, the speakers said. They also said the budget should be meaningfully participatory.
They called upon the government to announce a schedule and guiding outlines enabling the preparation of district-based budgets to be incorporated into the national budget for the next fiscal year.
The speakers also stressed ensuring special budget for the challenged people, indigenous communities, sex workers and HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) affected people in the national budget.
Chittagong City Corporation Mayor Mohammad Manjur Alam was the chief guest in the programme and ActionAid Country Director Farah Kabir facilitated the programme. Democratic Budget Movement's Rabeya Sultana presented a keynote paper underscoring the need for steps to drive out elements of discrimination against any locality and communities. She also stressed special allocations for the country's backward pockets.
Terming Chittagong a lifeline for the economy, the mayor said, by developing wards or thanas of the city, the whole economy would gain. Similarly, through development of the marginalised people of the unions or districts, the entire country would be benefited, he said.
Farah Kabir said women from the marginalised communities face numerous challenges in the society. “So, special budgets are needed for them,” she added.
Hena Akhtar, a leader of sex workers and social activist, said the sex workers cannot get their children educated in general schools due to social taboos and stigmas which need to be addressed.
She urged the government to allocate special budget for the sex workers so that their children may be mainstreamed to get proper education and health care.
Md Arifur Rahman, YPSA executive director, Pradip Roy, central steering committee member of Democratic Budget Movement, Principal Anwara Alam of Agrabad Mahila College, and Sahab Uddin Nipu, assistant professor of journalism at Chittagong University, among others, were present.

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