Minorities get Rs. 3511 crore in Budget. Muslim reaction

March 1, 2013 by  
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Minority affairs ministry gets Rs.3,511 crore

BudgetNew Delhi, February 28, 2013: Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram Thursday allocated Rs.3,511 crore to the minorities affairs ministry, an increase of 12 percent over last year, for special welfare schemes.

The allocation was made despite the ministry failing to utilise the money allocated to it in last year’s budget.

The allocation of Rs.3,511 crore ($655 million) in the budget 2013-14 marks a marginal increase from Rs.3,135 crore allocated in the last budget.

The finance ministry has raised the allocation of the Maulana Azad Education Foundation (MAEF) to Rs.160 crore, with an objective is to raise it to Rs.1,500 crore during the 12th plan period.

The MAEF formulates and implements educational schemes for educationally backward minorities and facilitates establishment of residential schools, especially for girls.

Chidambaram said the foundation wishes to add medical aid to its objectives and the same has been accepted.

A beginning can be made by providing medical facilities such as a resident doctor in educational institutions run or funded by the foundation, he said, adding Rs.100 crore is being allocated to launch this initiative.

The finance ministry has increased the allocation of scholarship for undergraduate and post-graduate levels to Rs.239 crore, an increase of 17 percent over the revised estimates of the last budget.

Allocation for free coaching and allied schemes for minorities has been increased from last year’s Rs.18 crore to Rs.22.50 crore.

Likewise for research, monitoring and evaluation of development schemes for minorities the amount has been raised to Rs.44 crore from last year’s Rs.39.70 crore.

For pre-Class 10 and post-Class 10 scholarships for minorities, the amount has been increased to Rs.855 crore and Rs.493 crore respectively, an increase of about 15 percent and 37 per cent respectively over revised estimates of the last year.

An allocation of Rs.1,110 crore has been made for the multi-sectoral development programme for minorities in this year’s budget from last year’s Rs.887.90 crore, marking an increase of about 20 percent, even as most funds allocated last year remain unused.

Similarly, the allocation has been increased for the Maulana Azad National Fellowship from Rs.63 crore to Rs.81 crore this year, while the spending last year was only Rs.59.50 crore.

While allocation has been increased for many special welfare schemes, cuts also have been effected in many other.

The finance ministry has allocated to the National Commission of Minorities Rs.7.17 crore, a reduction of about 16 percent over last year’s revised estimates, as its expenditure was only Rs.7.44 crore against the allocated Rs.8.35 crore in 2012.

Grants-in-aid to the Waqf board has also been marginally reduced from Rs.3.20 crore to Rs.3.18 crore. Also, for computerization of records of state Waqf boards the allocation has been cut by almost half from Rs.4.50 crore to Rs.2.70 crore.

– ians

Lessons for Indian Muslims in Union Budget

Lessons for Indian Muslims in Union BudgetFebruary 28, 2013: Today in his 187 point speech lengthening to 27 pages, the Union Finance Minister has following two short points for national minorities.

20. I have allocated Rs. 3,511 crore to the Ministry of Minority Affairs. This is an increase of 12 percent over the BE and 60 percent over the RE of 2012-13.

21. The Maulana Azad Education Foundation is the main vehicle to implement educational schemes and channelize funds to non-government organisations for the minorities. Its corpus stands at Rs. 750 crore. With the objective of raising it to Rs. 1,500 crore during the 12th Plan period, I propose to allocate Rs. 160 crore to the corpus fund. The Foundation wishes to add medical aid to its objectives. I have accepted that a beginning can be made by providing medical facilities such as an infirmary or a resident doctor in the educational institutions run or funded by the Foundation. I propose to allocate Rs.100 crore to launch this initiative.

Off Course he has a lot to do for resurrecting the economic and fiscal parameters of Indian economy, but should have done justice to bring Indian Muslims at par to go forward with other communities; for making the national agenda of Inclusive growth a success. It is clear that the UPA Government is not sincere for eradication of poverty among Indian Muslims; otherwise there would have been introduction of any scheme to help Indian Muslims come out of their vicious circle of poverty.

Considerably in January 2013, an appeal was made to the Ministry of Finance for announcing a working group to analyze the constraints for financial inclusion of Indian Muslims and to suggest remedial measures so that Muslims could get opportunity to access finance compatible with their faith. But that appeal could not please the Union Finance Minister because neither he nor his party faces the problem what Muslims are facing.

Similarly an appeal was made to the Ministry of Minority Affairs to propose a micro equity scheme to enable 84% Muslim workers engaged in the unorganized sector to access faith-based financial resources for being in line for economic growth. On follow up enquiry it was told by the Ministry officials that the same request has been forwarded. Probably the higher authority in the Government of India who received that forwarded request might have considered it worth to put in the dustbin because they do not have any intention to let the Indian Muslims come out of their poverty strata.

Remarkably there has been introduction of a medical scheme for the sake of Minorities because the UPA Government may be realizing that the poverty strata of Indian Muslims have come to a level where they might start falling under various diseases. So the UPA Government introduced medical scheme with an intention to keep them alive so that they could be able to vote them in the next Parliamentary election.

Now Indian Muslims need to use their brain to study the intention of the Congress Party led UPA Government. The community should review the recommendations made by Sachar Committee in light of their religious teachings and economic need. They may understand that the majority of the recommendations made by the Sachar Committee conflicts with Islamic teachings and the schemes framed by the UPA Government after release of Sachar Committee report are potentially dangerous in a manner that such schemes may divert Indian Muslims from their religious faiths and practices.

The Sachar Committee while making the recommendations have completely ignored the religious teachings of Indian Muslims, thus made many suggestions against Islamic ethics. The recommendation to open more banks in Muslims areas with knowing that Interest is prohibited in Islam shows that the committee desired that Indian Muslims should leave practicing of Islam while they need to access credits for coming out of poverty and starvation. Though the committee report states that the Indian Muslims receive just 0.48% of amount financed by SIDBI but surprisingly the committee makes recommendation that any shortfall in delivery of targeted Priority Sector Advances to the Minorities should be parked with institution like SIDBI, NABARD and NMDFC. The institution like SIDBI and NABARD who failed to deliver credits to Indian Muslims were recommended by the committee to have more funds for disbursement among Muslims; that too without suggesting any tip for SIDBI and NABARD to improve its delivery to Indian Muslims.

So Indian Muslims need to think about their strategic plan to vote in the next Parliamentary election because the UPA is happy with projection of Narendra Modi as Prime Ministerial candidate from the BJP, because that creates hope for the UPA that Indian Muslim votes may polarize towards UPA to stop person like Modi being Prime Minister of India. So, UPA might have taken Muslim votes as granted for next election.

Now Indian Muslims, like they did in Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Gujarat and Bihar Assembly elections, should try identify the possibility of any third front by combining the potentials of Mulayam Singh, Mamta Banaerjee, Nitish Kumar and Narendra Modi. If any such coalition exists where anyone from Mulayam, Nitish or Mamta be projected as Prime Ministerial Candidate for that coalition, the Muslims should think of voting that coalition to prove them political voting force against Congress.

It is time for Indian Muslims to realize that congress has forced them to observe denial of their genuine requests. If any other coalition give assurance that Muslims given their right to grow economically with practicing their religion, Indian Muslims should boycott Indian National congress to open party’s think valves. Otherwise Muslims would be pushed behind bars and hanged till death for no sin, but fake charges by the so called secular UPA Government and the statements like Shushil Kumar Shinde made about saffron terrorism would be taken back within a month without any apology for mistakes.

– tcn

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