Sahapedia is releasing a Budget Guide, the first-ever comprehensive study of the union government’s budget for the art and culture sector in India. The need for this report was necessitated by the absence of a critical engagement with, and analysis of, government policies and programmes for support to arts and culture.
As in other sectors, the pandemic has adversely impacted art and culture, but only more severely. Many art forms and practices are on the verge of extinction or decay as they have been languishing over decades for want of resources. Most consequentially, social security of the many dependent for livelihoods in this sector has been perennially ignored. This begs for introspection – if welfare schemes discuss and provide financial security for the poor across other sectors, then why is this not the case for the arts?
Allocations for MoC as a proportion of GoI budget have remained marginal for the last decade, averaging at 0.11%. For the last five years though, they have shown a declining trend falling to a minuscule 0.07% in FY22 – the lowest in the last 10 years. Allocations in 2021-22 stand at ₹2,688 crore, ₹461 crore less than last year. This 15% reduction comes on top of 30% mid-year downward revision of culture budget for last year. In the light of declining public funds for the sector, Sahapedia hopes that this study will initiate a much-needed conversation on government support to the art and culture sector. It also invites policy makers and other stakeholders to critically analyse policies affecting the sector. And reinvigorating public and private participation in preserving and conserving India’s rich cultural heritage.
The report looks in detail at:
- budgetary trends for art and culture over last few years, highlighting the minuscule, and gradually declining, support from the governments both at centre and in states;
- structural issues and problems associated with schemes administered by the Ministry of Culture;
- government's response to the pandemic's impact on the arts and culture sector, placing it in an international context;
- lack of public funds aggravated by the absence of robust data to inform policies and decelerating private contribution
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ALL THE WORLD'S WITHOUT A STAGE -
CULTURE NEEDS MORE GOVERNMENT SUPPORT -