The Chief Ministe4r K Chandrasekhar Rao said that Minorities have been subjected to discrimination and total neglect in the United Andhra Pradesh State, and added that since formation of Telangana, the State Government was making sincere efforts for their welfare. How much neglect the minorities have faced in the united AP can be gauged from the fact of 20 Annual State Budget allocations. In 1995-96 a mere Rs 1.20 Crore was allocated for the minorities, he pointed out.
Making a statement in the Legislative Assembly today on Minority Welfare, KCR said due to discrimination shown to minorities, they were subjected to socio-political and economic backwardness and oppression over the years. This has resulted in these sections feeling insecure, lack of faith and anxiety. After the formation of the Telangana State, sincere efforts were made to remove insecurity among the minorities, instill confidence among them and protect their identity.
The Chief Minister said that for the welfare and development of minorities who constituted 14.24 per cent of the population, a comprehensive plan is prepared. ‘For the first in the annals of history, we have allocated Rs 1030 Crore in the first State Budget for the welfare and development of the minorities. The allocations were then hiked to Rs 1204 Crore the same year’.
The backwardness among the minorities can be eradicated only through education. A majority of minorities are dependent on petty jobs and trades. Hence they are not been able to send their children for better education. Understanding this, the state government wanted the children of the minorities to get good and quality education without having any financial burden on their parents. The State government has decided to set up Residential Schools exclusively for the minorities at a cost of Rs 8000 Crores in the State. During 2016-17 Academic year, 71 Minority residential Schools were started. Another 129 Schools will be started in the next academic year. Realising that there is a large percent of girls dropping out of the schools, the State government made 100 Residential School for the girls. No other State or government in this country has ever made such a step for the minorities. About 1,28 lakh students (both girls and Boys) will get a global level education in English Medium from these schools. These revolutionary measures for the minorities will usher in a wonderful future for these youngsters. The Government is planning for a permanent solution to the problems faced by the minorities forever and brings a qualitative change in their lives through the setting up schools, KCR asserted.
For those minorities’ students pursuing their education abroad, for the first time, the government has introduced Overseas Scholarships Scheme. Last year, under this Scheme, 463 students were given Rs 10 lakh scholarship each besides providing their airfare. This year we have increased the scholarship amount from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 20 Lakh. On par with SC/ST/BC students, 1.18 lakh minority students studying from Intermediate to PG were given Post Metric scholarship to each one who had applied, MCR said and referred to IAS coaching Centres, study circles for Minorities.
Spl IT SEZ for Minorities
KCR referred to steps taken to encourage Minority entrepreneurs, and added that a Special IT SEZ is also being launched in Hyderabad exclusively for the minority industrialists. He also referred to provision of Auto rockshwas on 50 per cent subsidy. Shaadi Mubarak scheme, celebration of Ramzaan as State festival, honorarium for Imams and Mauzams, Special Grant to Telangana State Haj Committee for the pilgrims undertaking visit to Mecca and Madina. Steop taken for protection of Urdu language, Grants given to Wakf Board and Institutions to take up renovation, repair and constructions in the wakf Institutions, among others, KCR said.
The Sudhir Commission constituted to study the living standards of the minorities in the State had toured the State and submitted a report. The Report is sent to the BC Commission to make reservations based on the population figures. The BC Commission is seeking opinions from various sections and will submit its recommendations to the government.
Dalit Christians have launched an agitation for the SC status. We have solved these problems after we came to power, the Chief Minister added.(NSS)