Of the total funds given to states under Centre’s Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao scheme, 78.91% have been used for advertising, the Committee on Empowerment of Women told Lok Sabha on Thursday.

In its report “Empowerment of women through education with special reference to Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao Scheme’’, the committee pointed out that only Rs 156.46 crore of the Rs 848-crore budget has been spent on the implementation of the scheme over five years. The committee is chaired by Maharashtra BJP Lok Sabha MP Heena Vijaykumar Gavit.

The Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao campaign, launched in 2015, is aimed at generating awareness and improving the efficiency of welfare services intended for girls in India.

The women empowerment committee on Thursday said of the Rs 848 crore allocated to the scheme over five years, Rs 622.48 crore have been released to the states. The panel noted that of Rs 446.72 crore given to the states between 2016 and 2019, “a whopping 78.91% was spent only on media advocacy”.

The women empowerment panel also said that the Ministry of Women and Child Development, which is one of the entities that look after the scheme, has been releasing additional money despite funds pending with the state.

“The committee also finds that the nodal ministry [Ministry of Women and Child Development] has no disaggregated information on the spending by the states/UTs on education, health and other interventions under BBBP [Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao],” said the report.

The panel has urged the Ministry of Women and Child Development to ensure that the funds for the scheme are utilised properly. “The government should… focus on planned expenditure allocation for sectoral interventions in education and health,” the report stated.