A compendium of Beneficiary-
Oriented Central Government Schemes
Especially for the Welfare of Minorities
Compiled & Edited by Dr. Sajjad Akhtar
National Commission for Minorities
Lok Nayak Bhavan, Khan Market
Pages 230, Price Not Stated
India’s diversity expresses itself in myriad forms. Religion, language and ethnicity play dominant role in shaping identity. Of late, the Union Government has taken active interest in promoting the welfare and development of these sections who have come to be clubbed under ‘minority’. While issues relating to linguistic minorities surfaced very early after the republic came into existence, the problems of religious minorities came to be recognized around the mid-1990s. Similarly the office of the Commissioner for Linguistic Minorities was set up in Allahabad in 1957. The National Commission for Minorities came into existence in 1992. Around early 80s, Prime Minister Indira Gandhi announced a special 15-point programme for development of minorities which was reviewed and the ‘Prime Minister’s New 15-point Progr-amme for the Welfare of Minorities’ was announced by Manmohan Singh in June 2006. It was also during tenure of Dr. Manmohan Singh that a separate ministry was constituted to take care of minority affairs. In the interregnum Maulana Azad Education Found-ation was set up to provide financial assis-tance with the objective of funding construction of school buildings. The Government upgraded and reinforced the wakf laws and set up Central Wakf Council. An exclusive finance body under the name of National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation was set up in 1994 for supporting economic development. Taking a serious view of the decline of Urdu language a National Council for Promotion of Urdu language was established in 1996 as the nodal agency.
These bodies have unleashed a host of programmes, schemes and plans to promote welfare as well as development of minorities in India. Sajjad Akhtar has compiled the beneficiary-oriented schemes of the Central Government and explained the operational modalities of the same. It is expected to be a handy guide to the various schemes for the Central Government.