Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Centre yet to take stand on Dalit Muslims: Salman Khurshid


The UPA is not clear about its stand on Dalit Muslims and will take up the issue only after implementing all recommendations of the Sachar report. A recommendation on Dalit Muslims has been made in the Ranganath Mishra report.

When asked about UPA’s stand on this sensitive issue boggling the community’s mind, Union minister of state for minority affairs Salman Khurshid said here on Sunday, "We have no stand on this issue as we are still busy implementing the recommendations of the Sachar Committee. We have already implemented 90 percent of the recommendations."

He said the recommendations in the Mishra report will also be studied and implemented. "On Dalit issue, we will seek the opinion of all stakeholders," he added while interacting with the media.

Khurshid also told that the Centre is now going a step ahead of the reservation plank. He said, "An Equal Opportunity Commission has been set up which will decide the quantum of reservation for the deprived sections of the society."

He said both majority and minority and other sections which are deprived will come under the ambit of this commission which will not prefix quota but decide it later as per space and availability in government and private sector.

Khurshid said that a Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by defence minister A K Antony has been constituted. He said the GoM has already held two rounds of meeting. He was of the view that the minority groups would benefit under this scheme since it is a common belief that minority sections are more deprived.

Khurshid said he has written to CM Nitish Kumar on schemes for Minority Concentration Districts (MCD). There are seven MCDs in Bihar out of 90 across the country for which the Centre has made provision of Rs 3,500 crore in 11th Plan for redressal of various problems facing the community.

"The Bihar CM complained that we are not giving him funds for the infrastructural facilities in madrassas. The matters related to madrassas are looked after by the HRD ministry which runs various schemes. He can ask my ministry for funds to open schools and ITIs and construction of hostels for minorities," Khurshid said adding it should not be made a poll issue.

He said the opposition should admit what the UPA government has been doing and also realize their own failures. The minister also lamented the problem in implementation of the scholarship scheme for minority students. He said the states will now have to put on website the names of all the students recommended for the scholarship and also those whose applications were rejected, giving the reasons for the same. The scholarship is given from Class I to XII and also to college students.

Credits to RINA news agency

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