The government's spending on social services has shown a rising trend since FY-16 with a focus on many aspects of the social well-being of the citizens of the country.
The share of expenditure on social services in the total expenditure of the government has been around 25 per cent from FY-18 to FY-20. It increased to 26.6 per cent in FY-23 (BE).
According to the economic survey, the social services expenditure witnessed an increase of 8.4 per cent in FY21 over FY20 and another 31.4 per cent increase in FY22 over FY21, being the pandemic years, which required enhanced outlay, especially in the health and education sectors.
While the social sector expenditure outlay of the Central and state governments was 9.15 lakh crore in 2015-16, it has increased steadily to stand at 21.3 lakh crore in FY23 (BE).
As per economic survey, the share of expenditure on health in the total expenditure on social services, has increased from 21 per cent in FY19 to 26 per cent in FY23 (BE).
The Fifteenth Finance Commission, in its report, recommended that public health expenditure of the Union and states together should be increased in a progressive manner to reach 2.5 per cent of GDP by 2025.
In keeping with this objective, the Central and the state governments' budgeted expenditure on the health sector reached 2.1 per cent of GDP in FY23 (BE) and 2.2 per cent in FY22 (RE), against 1.6 per cent in FY21.
The Economic Survey 2022-23, tabled in Parliament said that as the world recovers from the effects of a global pandemic, and an ongoing war, India prepares to enter its 'Amrit Kaal'.
This era promises to be one where economic growth is supported by social welfare, where India today is committed to leave no one behind, and ensure that the impact and benefits of its growth and progress reach all in its diverse and expansive populace transcending innumerable cultures, languages, and geographies, constituting the real wealth of the country.
The economic survey further said that the focus on social welfare is all the more pertinent in the contemporary scenario as India has adopted the UN SDGs 2030, which are a set of comprehensive, far-reaching, and people-centric universal and transformative goals and targets.
Many of these 17 goals concern the social well-being of individuals, resolving as follows: "We resolve, between now and 2030, to end poverty and hunger everywhere; to combat inequalities within and among countries; to build peaceful, just, and inclusive societies; to protect human rights and promote gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls; and to ensure the lasting protection of the planet and its natural resources. We resolve also to create conditions for sustainable, inclusive and sustained economic growth, shared prosperity and decent work for all, taking into account different levels of national development and capacities."
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