The last three budgets had 11 mentions of Rs 100 crore combined. Jaitley's had as many as 29, of which 28 were new schemes being given a 100-crore allocation and one was a tax threshold. The repetition earned him a fair amount of approbation from Twitter.
The coveted Rs 100-crore club is actually a rather motley crew, making it unclear whether this figure was picked as a way of ensuring there is a token amount for everything that the Narendra Modi government wanted to cover in its first budget.
National Industrial Corridors, bringing metros to Lucknow and Ahmedabad, establishing a kisan television channel that will bring real-time information to farmers: all have been granted this special allocation. Where else will you see the beti bachao beti padhao yojana [save the girl child, educate the girl child] sitting right next to investment in a study to link all of India’s rivers?
According so many things the same expenditure also has observers wondering why so many things have been deemed of identical priority. Consider, for instance, that the preservation of all our heritage archaeological sites gets the same amount of money as one national war memorial.
Here are the schemes that have made it into the coveted Rs 100 crore club:
Van Bandhu Kalyan Yojana [Tribal Development Scheme]
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Yojana [Save the girl child, educate the girl child scheme]
Start Up Village Entrepreneurship Programme
Programme for Good Governance
Community Radio Scheme
Metro in Lucknow & Ahmedabad
Modernisation of Madrassas
Agricultural excellence institutions in Jharkhand and Assam
Agri Tech Infrastructure Fund
Soil Health Card for farmers
National Adaptation Fund for Climate Change
National Industrial Corridor Authority
Ultra Modern Super Critical Coal Based Thermal Power Technology
1 MW Solar Parks
National War Memorial
Technology Development Fund
National Mission on Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Augmentation Drive
Archaeological heritage site preservation
Detailed Project Reports on inter-linking rivers
Ghat development and beautification
Sports University in Manipur
Training for Asian and Commonwealth Games
Young Leaders Programme
National Centre for Himalayan Studies
North East Organic Food fund
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