TS plans permanent solution to problems of minorities

  • CM lists welfare measures taken so far

Hyderabad:A�Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao said that since minorities have been subjected to discrimination and total neglect in theA�UnitedA�AndhraA�PradeshA�State,A�the Telangana State Government is making sincere efforts for their welfare.A� How much neglect the minorities have faced in the united AP can be gauged from the 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 Wednesday on Minorities Welfare, KCR said due to discrimination shown to them, 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 theA�TelanganaA�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 was prepared. a�?For the first in the annals of history, we have allocated Rs 1,030 crores in the first State Budget for the welfare and development of the minorities. The allocations were then hiked to Rs 1,204 crores the same year.a�?

The backwardness among the minorities can be eradicated only through education. A majority of minorities are dependent on petty jobs and trades. Hence they have not been able to send their children to good schools and give 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.A� Realizing that there is a large percentage of girls dropping out of schools, the State government made 100 residential schools for the girls. No other State or government in this country has ever taken 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 and bring a qualitative change in their lives through the setting up of schools, KCR asserted.

For those minoritiesa�� 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 airfare. a�?This year we have increased the scholarship amount from Rs 10 lakhs to Rs 20 lakhs. 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,a�? KCR said and referred to IAS coaching centres and study circles for minorities.

Special IT SEZ for minorities

Referring to steps taken to encourage minority entrepreneurs, KCR said that aA�Special IT SEZ is also being launched inA�HyderabadA�exclusively for the minority industrialists. Listing the schemes his government has undertaken for minoritiesa�� welfare, KCR referred to provision of auto rickshaws on 50 per cent subsidy; Shaadi Mubarak; celebration of Ramzaan as State festival;A�honorarium for Imams and Mauzams;A�A� special grant to Telangana State Haj Committee; protection of Urdu language;A� grants forA� Wakf Board and Institutions to take up renovation, repair and constructions.

The Sudhir Commission that was constituted to study the living standards of minorities in Telangana had toured the State and submitted a report. The report has been 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

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