Union Minister for Minority Affairs Shri Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi has said that the “Talibani mentality” on women’s liberty, dignity, empowerment and constitutional equality will not be tolerated in India. He was addressing the “Minorities Day Celebration” programme organised by the National Commission for Minorities, NCM, in New Delhi today.
Shri Naqvi said that those who opposed making the social evil of Triple Talaq a crime or raised question on removal of restriction on Muslim women to perform Haj with Mehram only and now creating commotion on the Constitutional equality regarding age of marriage of women are “Professional Protesters” of essence of the Indian Constitution.
Shri Naqvi said that the Government has demolished “Duping Appeasement” by “Determination to Development with Dignity”. The Constitutional and social commitment of the Indians, especially the majority community, has ensured that socio-economic-educational, religious and other rights of Minorities are absolutely safe and secure in the country.
He said that while on one hand, believers of almost all religions of the world live in India; on the other hand, a large number of atheists also exist in the country with dignity and equal constitutional and social rights.
The Minister said that the Government led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has worked with the commitment to “Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas, Sabka Prayas” during the last 7 years which has ensured significant reforms and inclusive development of all sections of the society including the Minorities.
Shri Naqvi lauded the role played by National Commission for Minorities in safeguarding the interests and ensuring the welfare of minorities in the country.
Shri Naqvi stated that the Government has provided a credible platform to indigenous artisans and craftsmen from every corner of the country through “Hunar Haat”. More than 7 lakh artisans, craftsmen and people associated with them have been provided employment and employment opportunities during the last 6 years.
Shri Naqvi said the Government, after 2014, has given scholarships to about 5 crore students from 6 notified Minority communities—Parsis, Jains, Buddhists, Sikhs, Christians and Muslims. About 50 per cent beneficiaries are girl students. It has resulted into significant decline in school dropout rate among the Minorities especially Muslim girls. School dropout rate among Muslim girls which was more than 70 per cent before 2014, has now come down to less than about 30 per cent. Our aim is to make it zero per cent in the coming days, he added.
He said the Government has provided employment and self-employment opportunities to more than 12 lakh Minority communities’ people during the last 7 years. The Government has developed more than 49 thousand major infrastructures such as schools, colleges, ITIs, polytechnics, degree colleges, residential schools, drinking water and toilet facilities, anganwadi centres, skill development centres, common service centres etc in deprived areas across the country under “Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karykram” (PMJVK) during the last 7 years.
Shri Naqvi further said that the Minorities have also been immensely benefitted from various schemes of the Central Government. About 22 to 37 per cent beneficiaries of “Mudra Yojana”, “Jan Dhan Yojana”, “Ayushman Bharat Yojana”, “Kisaan Samman Nidhi”, “Ujjwala Yojana”, “Swacch Bharat Mission”, drinking water and electricity schemes belong to the weaker and backward Minorities.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of State for Minority Affairs Shri John Barla informed that Minorities should make themselves aware of the various schemes such as educational loans and scholarships for Minorities and avail benefits. He said that assistance for construction of Sadbhawna Mandap, schools, colleges, hospitals and coaching centers are being funded under Prime Minister Jan Vikas Karyakram by the Ministry. He also requested that community leaders should create awareness about the schemes of Ministry of Minority Affairs available for Minorities.
Delivering the keynote address, NCM Chairman, Shri Iqbal Singh Lalpura stated that barring few incidents, India has been riot-free in the last 7-8 years despite evil designs of the enemies of the nation. He informed that an Inter-Faith Coordination Council at the National level is being considered by the National Commission for Minorities and stressed that the same may also be considered at the State and District Level. Inter-faith research should be encouraged. Shri Lalpura said that efforts may be made for increasing awareness about the fundamental aspects of other religions so that people may learn about the beliefs and culture of different communities. The Commission is also planning to publish a book consolidating the key learning of various religions. He added that efforts of religious leaders for propagation of schemes of Ministry of Minority Affairs are extremely crucial for welfare of the minority communities at the grass-root level. Shri Lalpura highlighted the role of the NCM in proactively reaching out to the Minority communities and assuring them of a fair and just hearing in all cases of grievances. Chairman and other members of Commission are undertaking visits to various states for reviewing of the implementation of schemes for Minority communities besides taking up their grievances for resolution and also informed about the launch of mobile app of Complaint Monitoring System of the Commission.
NCM Vice-Chairman Shri Atif Rasheed, NCM Member Shri Kersi K Deboo and NCM Secretary Shri S K Dev Verman also graced the occasion. The event was attended by more than 400 leaders and members of the notified Minority communities of India.
N. Ao/(MoMA release)