Mohamed Shaffeeq N
This article is a general overview and analysis of the actions taken on the Sachar Committee recommendations, in the past one and half decades after the submission of the report.
Sachar Committee, a high-level committee constituted by the UPA government in 2005, is a very familiar name to the Indians, especially Muslims. The Committee, headed by Justice Rajinder Sachar, was formed to prepare a report on the social, economic and educational status of the Muslim community in India. Sachar submitted the “Social, Economic and Educational Status of the Muslim Community of India: A Report”, on 30th November 2006. This was the first comprehensive report that covered and analysed the issues faced by the Muslim community in independent India and suggested solutions to remove the impediments that prevented the Indian Muslims from participating in the economic, political and social mainstreams of the country.
The report underscored identity, security and equity crisis as the three main challenges faced by the Muslim community in India. It further said that the status of the Muslim community, in general, continued to be below that of the OBC Hindus, and even the SC/ST communities, the social groups generally believed to be the most backward in the country. A key issue highlighted in the report was that while Muslims constitute 14% of the Indian population, they comprise only 2.5% of the Indian bureaucracy.
The Sachar Committee Report brought the issue of the inequalities Indian Muslims face to national attention, sparking discussions that are still ongoing. The Committee recommended setting up an Equal Opportunity Commission to provide a legal mechanism to address discrimination complaints, including matters such as housing.
The Sachar Committee has put forward 76 recommendations/suggestions of which 72 recommendations were considered, 1 deferred and 3 rejected by the Government. Some of the major recommendations considered by the government are:
1. Set up an Equal Opportunity Commission to look into the grievances of deprived groups like minorities.
2. Create a nomination procedure to increase the participation of minorities in public bodies.
3. Establish a delimitation procedure that does not reserve constituencies with a high minority population for SCs.
4. Increase the employment share of Muslims, particularly where there is a great deal of public dealing. Work out mechanisms to link madrasas with the Higher Secondary School Board.
5. Recognise degrees from madrasas for eligibility in defence, civil and banking examinations.
The government took 43 decisions based on those 72 recommendations, by clubbing the recommendations of similar nature. All 43 decisions taken by the government on the recommendations of the Sachar Committee have been grouped under the following major focus areas:
1. Education (15 decisions)
2. Skill development (2 decisions)
3. Access to credit (6 decisions)
4. Special development initiatives (2 decisions) – MSDP, JnNURM
5. Measures for affirmative action (4 decisions) – Equal Opportunity Commission, Diversity Index, National Data Bank and Assessment & Monitoring Authority
6. Waqfs (4 decisions)
7. Miscellaneous (10 decisions) – Communal Violence (Prevention) Bill, Multi-media campaign, Delimitation Act, Sensitisation, etc.
The responsibility to implement these decisions has been assigned to the Ministry of Minority Affairs and the concerned Ministries/Departments.
Out of the 43 decisions, 39 are initiated/implemented or partially initiated whereas three decisions that were categorised under “Measures for Affirmative Actions” and one decision under the “Miscellaneous” category are still pending or not initiated.
Decisions Yet to be Implemented
1. An expert group to examine and determine the structure and functions of the Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC)
2. An expert group to recommend an appropriate “diversity index” to promote diversity in living, education and workspaces
3. An Autonomous assessment and Monitoring Authority (AMA), to evaluate the data maintained by National Data Bank
4. Ask Parliament to consider the passing of the Communal Violence (Preventive, Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill, 2005. It provides for penal provisions as deterrents, setting up Special Courts and mechanisms for compensation and rehabilitation of riot victims
The first two decisions were assigned to the Ministry of Minority Affairs, the third to the erstwhile Planning Commission and the fourth to the Ministry of Home Affairs.
In pursuance of these decisions, two different Expert Groups were set up to prepare a proposal for the setting up of the Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC) and a group to recommend ‘diversity index’. The last Cabinet meeting of the second UPA government under Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, which was held on 20-02-2014, approved the proposal to set up the EOC along with the group to recommend ‘diversity index’ for minorities through an Act of Parliament. However, after the formation of the new Government in 2014, the proposal was re-circulated for inter-ministerial consultation and decided to withdraw the decisions or not to implement the recommendations.
An Assessment and Monitoring Authority (AMA) was set up in the Planning Commission in pursuance of the third listed decision of the Government in 2008. The AMA set up three Working Groups and based on this, a detailed report of AMA was finalised and approved in the meeting chaired by Dr Syeda Hamid, the then Member, Planning Commission on 02-05-2014 and forwarded to MoMA to take appropriate actions. One of the recommendations made by the AMA was that it (the AMA) should be made an institution with a separate Secretariat under the erstwhile Planning Commission for concurrent assessment and monitoring of various welfare schemes/programmes of the government. This recommendation of AMA was referred to NITI Aayog (successor of the Planning Commission) to institutionalise the system of AMA under NITI Aayog. However, NITI Aayog did not accept to set up AMA in that office and recommended that AMA may be set up in MoMA. The matter is still under consideration by the Ministry of Minority Affairs.
Instead of the recommended “The Communal Violence (Prevention, Control and Rehabilitation of Victims) Bill, 2005” another bill, “The Prevention of Communal Violence (Access to Justice and Reparations) Bill, 2013” was approved by the Cabinet in 2013. This bill came up for discussion in the Rajya Sabha in 2014 but was deferred.
Government Decisions vs Implementation Status
1. “The Educational Backwardness of the Muslim Community as brought out by the Sachar Committee will be addressed through a multi-pronged strategy. The strategy will focus specifically on improving the access to education of Muslim girls”. – Department of School Education & Literacy (DoSEL) and Ministry of Minority Affairs
• Extension of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan(SSA), Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas and the Pre-matric, Post-matric and Merit-cum-means based scholarship schemes to minority concentrated districts was the strategy extended by different ministries.
o SSA is to ensure universalising elementary education for all children from 6-14 years of age. Even though SSA can be effective, Budget‘ utlised vs allocated’ is alarming. 1n 2016-17, the government had allotted 14,328 crores for minorities, of which only Rs 7005.68 crores (only 50%) was spent.
o Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas are residential upper primary schools for girls from minority communities in ‘educationally backward’ blocks. Only 269 Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas are added in educationally backward blocks after 2007 making it a total of 824. Out of these, only 625 are operational. In Muslim minority dominated blocks, KGBV can adopt the Urdu medium and can appoint Urdu teachers. Out of the 552 sanctioned posts of Urdu teachers in KGBV, 252 are vacant as of 31.03.2018.
o The promise of “One Crore” Minority Scholarships remains unfulfilled in the Budget 2022-23 too, though the funds for Pre-Matric and Post-Matric Minority Scholarships have respectively been increased over the previous year from Rs 1378 cr to Rs 1425 cr (3.4%) and Rs 468 cr to Rs 515 cr (10.04%). Though the amount of Merit-cum-Means Scholarship for Minorities has been increased from Rs 325 cr in 2021-22 to Rs 365 cr (12.3%) in the current financial year, it still remains lower than the pertaining outlay of Rs 400 cr two years back. There is no increase in the budgetary provisions for other educational schemes of the Ministry of Minority Affairs.
2. “The outreach of upper primary schools, particularly for Muslim girls, will be expanded with “girls only” schools, wherever required, and by opening residential Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya (KGBV) schools, on priority, in areas with a substantial Muslim population”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• To improve Muslim girls’ participation in education, the Sachar Committee had recommended setting up residential Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas (upper primary schools for girls from the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes and minority communities) in ‘educationally backward’ blocks. Till March 31, 2020, 824 such schools were sanctioned in 88 districts with a high Muslim population in 18 states/union territories. Of these, only 625 are operational with only 13.71% Muslim girls’ enrollment.
3. “In pursuance of the goal of universalising secondary education, priority will be given to opening of secondary/senior secondary schools in areas of Muslim concentration, wherever there is need for such schools”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• With the aim of opening government schools in minority concentrated areas, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan (RMSA) was approved. Since the implementation of RMSA from 2009-10 up to 31.12.2017, out of 12,682 new secondary schools approved at the national level, only 1,375 (10.84%) have been approved in the Minority Concentrated Districts.
4. “A mass mobilization campaign will be carried out in all districts, having a substantial population of Muslims, to generate awareness about the need for literacy and elementary education and to promote vocational education and skill development. A special literacy drive will be taken up in these districts to improve the overall literacy rate and especially the literacy rate of Muslim women”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• The new variant of the National Literacy Mission ‘Saakshar Bharat’ was launched on 08.09.2009 with an objective to make 70 million non-literate adults literate (functional literacy) by the end of the 11th Plan. The scheme had a special focus on women, belonging to the minorities. It was proposed to cover 12 million Muslims (10 million women and 2 million men) under the programme.
• The first assessment conducted by the National Literacy Mission Authority from August 2010 to August 2016, says 5.12crore adults have been certified as literates, of which 47 lakh (9.18%) are certified learners from the Muslim community.
5. “New Jan Shikshan Sansthans (JSS) would be set up in all districts, with a substantial population of Muslims, not covered as yet with such Sansthans”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• Jan Shikshan Sansthans (JSSs) are meant to provide vocational training to non-literates, neo-literates and the school dropouts. Even though JSSs are imparting training in 33 of the 88 ‘Muslim-concentrated’ districts in the country, no new JSSs have been set up since 2014-15.
6. “In areas with a concentration of Muslim population, Block Institutes of Teacher Education (BITEs) would be established to impart pre-service and in-service training to primary, upper primary and secondary level teachers”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• This centrally sponsored scheme, inter-alia, envisages the establishment of 196 BITEs, including one such institute in a block of each of the 90 MCDs (other than the block in which a DIET (District Institute of Education and Training) is sanctioned, for which central assistance is to be provided. BITE is to be established in the block having the highest concentration of minority population, depending upon the criterion for which the district has been identified for setting up the BITEs. Up to 2017-18, out of the 81 BITEs approved in 18 States, 30 BITEs have been sanctioned for minorities and 4 minority BITEs have been established.
7. “The allocation for setting up women’s hostels in colleges and Universities would be stepped up further during the 11th Plan. The University Grants Commission (UGC) would pay special attention to setting up women’s hostels in higher education institutions in Muslim concentration areas”. – Department of Higher Education
• UGC had sanctioned 285 Women’s Hostels during the the11th Plan in 90 Minority Concentrated Districts. Since the inception of the programme up to 2015-16, out of 850 women’s hostels were sanctioned at the national level, only 177 (20.82% have been approved/sanctioned in MCDs. From 2016-17, no new women’s hostels are sanctioned or approved in MCDs.
8. “The Area Intensive and Madrasa Modernization Programme will be augmented and the scheme revised to enhance the components eligible for assistance under this programme”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• ‘The Area Intensive and Madrasa Modernization Programme’ has been recast as two schemes, namely, the ‘Scheme of Providing Quality Education in Madrasas’ (SPQEM) and the scheme for ‘Infrastructure Development of Minority Institutions’ (IDMI). The scheme is demand-driven. Since the inception of SPQEM in 2006-07, over 85,822 madrasas and 1,76,654 teachers benefitted up to 2015-16. 957 institutions got the benefit of the IDMI during the same period.
9. “The Mid-Day Meal (MDM) scheme is being extended to cover children in upper primary classes. Special attention would be given to all Muslim concentration blocks, which are educationally backward”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• Though, the Planning Commission had approved the extension of the MDM scheme to students studying in all types of schools located in SC, ST and Minority Concentrated Districts; benefitting approximately 60.37 lakh children in 29,116 schools in MCDs and specially focused districts, this scheme has not been implemented in the MCDs yet.
10. “Existing school and community buildings could be used in the evenings as ‘study centres’ and existing teachers will be engaged on honoraria to tutor willing students including girls, who could be accompanied by guardians”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• Even though all the State Governments/Union Territory Administrations have been advised by the MHRD to use the existing school buildings and community buildings as the study centres for school children, no effective steps are reported to have been taken on the decision.
11. “The National Curriculum Framework-2005 envisages strengthening of a national system of education in a pluralistic society, based on the values enshrined in the Constitution of India, such as social justice, equality and secularism. Text books are being revised in accordance with the National Curriculum Framework-2005”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• Based on National Curriculum Framework-2005, MHRD recommended NCERT to revise the syllabi and prepare new textbooks of all the subjects for all stages of school education based on the values enshrined in the Constitution of India, the new national education policy and syllabus revision is based on promoting Hindutva ideology.
12. “The trend of the pool of eligible population for higher education increasing faster for SCs/STs than for Muslims will be examined further”. – Department of School Education & Literacy
• A Standing Committee has been constituted by the Ministry of HRD, as per the National University for Educational Planning & Administration (NUEPA) with the mandate to monitor the minority related schemes and programmes and to suggest modifications with a view to cater to the needs of the minorities. But no effective steps have been taken.
• According to the All India Survey on Higher Education 2017-18, the increase in enrollment of Muslim students has been only 1 per cent (4% to 5%) from 2007.
13. “A mechanism has already been put in place to make granting of minority educational institution status more responsive. The question of equivalence of qualifications from Madrasas for subsequent access to higher education has been engaging the attention of Government. Institutions like Aligarh Muslim University, Jamia Milia Islamia University and Jamia Hamdard University already recognize qualifications from Madrasas”. -Department of Higher Education (DoHE)
• The State Education Board, Council of Board of School Education in India and other School Examination Boards have approved the certificates/qualifications of the Madrasa Boards equivalent to their Secondary and Senior Secondary qualifications and the corresponding certificates of the Central Board of Secondary Education, for employment purpose and entry to higher levels education. But there are no updates on its status from the MHRD after 2015.
14. “The Ministry of Minority Affairs will implement three scholarship schemes, a coaching & allied scheme specifically for students from the minority communities and other schemes for development of education”. -Ministry of Minority Affairs
• The schemes implemented by the ministry and its status are as below:
• Scholarship schemes
(a) Pre-matric Scholarship Scheme: Notwithstanding the sanction of more than 50 lakh scholarships every year, the fund release is partial or pending from 2017.
(b) Post-matric Scholarship Scheme: More than 50 lakh scholarships are sanctioned every year, but the fund release is partial or pending from 2018, and
(c) Merit-cum-Means based Scholarship Scheme: Releasing funds is partial or pending from 2018 even though more than 10 lakh scholarship is sanctioned every year.
• Maulana Azad National Fellowship Scheme (launched in 2009-10): From 2015-20, this scheme has sanctioned scholarships to 6,90,602 girl students.
• Naya Savera – Free Coaching and Allied Scheme: The number of students who benefitted from this scheme has drastically decreased from 2015 to 2020 from 16,427 to 1,782. Fund allocation has also decreased to 32% in this period.
15. “The corpus of the Maulana Azad Education Foundation (MAEF) will be augmented and its operations expanded and streamlined”. –Ministry of Minority Affairs
• During the 11th Plan, the corpus of MAEF was increased from Rs. 200 crores to Rs. 750 crores and later in 12th plan, the corpus has been further enhanced to Rs. 1,250 crores.
• In the budget 2022-23, funds for Maulana Azad Education Foundation (MAEF) which promotes education among the educationally backward minorities, was cut down by over 99 per cent as compared to the last Union Budget of 2021-2022. The funds for MAEF is cut down to 0.01 crore from the last allocation of Rs 90 crore.
16. “An inter-ministerial group will be set up consisting of representatives of the Ministries of Labour & Employment, small Scale Industries & Agro & Rural- based Industries, Human Resource Development, Textiles, Heavy Industries, Health & Family Welfare, Minority Affairs, Food Processing Industries, Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation, Ministry of Finance (Banking) and Department of Industrial Policy & Promotion to plan and monitor the implementation of a comprehensive programme for skill development amongst Muslims so that the benefits from complementarities and synergy from a host of schemes could accrue to the intended beneficiaries quickly and in a palpable fashion. A ‘cluster approach’ will be adopted to address the need for skill and entrepreneurship”. – NITI Aayog (Erstwhile Planning Commission)
• A new Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship has been formed, after 2014. No new ITIs / ITCs were affiliated with National Council for Vocational Training (NCVT) or seats in present ITIs / ITCs were increased in Minority Concentration Areas.
• No additional allocation under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) (earlier: Multi-sectoral Development Programme, MsDP) has been earmarked for skill development training from 2014. And also no new ITIs and Polytechnics were sanctioned for Minority Concentration Areas under the MsDP to fill the development deficit.
17. “NABARD and SIDBI will be advised to set aside funds for training minorities under their EDP programmes with a focus on the skill development of artisans in traditional occupations and also for re-equipping them with modern skills, especially in minority-dominated clusters. An inter-ministerial group, set up to plan and monitor the implementation of this programme, will also look into integrating this into their plan”. -Department of Financial Services (DFS)
• RBI has instructed the lead banks to organise entrepreneur development programmes so that members of the minority communities in these areas could derive the benefits of various programmes being financed by the banks.
Access to Credit
18. “Access to credit for Muslims is critical as a large proportion of this community is engaged in self-employment activities. While formulating the district plan it will be ensured that adequate credit is made available to minorities and Muslims in particular, with convenience and ease”. – Department of Financial Services
• Even though, the share percentage of Priority Sector Lending (PSL) going to minorities has shown a steady increase from 10.6% in 2007-08 to 15.79% as of 31.03.2018, the share percentage of Priority Sector Lending (PSL) going to the Muslim community among minorities by the Public Sector Banks (PSBs) as of 31.03.2018 is only 49.17%. Muslims constitute 73.57% of the minority population in India, hence more awareness and also proactive participation is needed.
19. “Public sector banks will be advised to open more branches in Muslim concentration areas”. -Department of Financial Services
• A total of 21,187 branches of Public Sector Banks have been opened in areas with substantial minority populations up to 2018-19. Only 2,068 new branches of public sector banks are added after 2014 in minority concentrated areas. Community wise data need to be released.
20. “Public sector banks would regularly monitor disposal of loan applications for minorities and maintain reasons for rejection of applications so that the applicants can exercise full rights to information about the status of their applications. District- wise and bank-wise data will be made available on the web- site of RBI”. -Department of Financial Services
• Department of Financial Services has devised a proforma for reporting and monitoring loans to minorities. Non-viability of projects, lack of proper documentation, submission of applications at the fag end of the quarter, non-completion of documents, etc. are some of the broad reasons for rejection/pendency of loans. More awareness is needed in this area.
21. “RBI has already issued necessary instructions to all scheduled commercial Banks to specifically direct credit to Muslims, create awareness of various credit schemes through publicity and organize entrepreneurial development programmes”. -Department of Financial Services
• Every year around 4,000 entrepreneurial development programmes are organised and around 50,000 are benefitted in the minority concentrated districts/towns/blocks too. No community-wise data is available.
22. “Micro-finance among women would be promoted, especially in clusters, by the Ministries/Departments /PSU banks/financial institutions”. –Department of Financial Services and Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (Erstwhile Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation)
• Department of Financial Services and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs have taken different steps and launched many schemes.
23. “The National Minorities Development & Finance Corporation (NMDFC) will be restructured so as to make it more effective instrument of intervention”. -Ministry of Minority Affairs
• The Cabinet has approved the restructuring of NMDFC on the lines proposed by this Ministry. The process of restructuring the NMDFC business model is in progress.
Special Development Initiatives
24. “A Multi-sectoral Development Programme (MsDP) to provide basic amenities, and improve opportunities for employment will be launched in identified backward minority concentration districts”. -Ministry of Minority Affairs
• Multi-sectoral Development Programme (MsDP) was launched in 90 identified MCDs in 2008-09. The programme got restructured and decided to implement in 710 blocks and 66 towns. The projects under this programme included the construction of houses, health centres, drinking water facilities, anganwadis, school buildings, residential schools, colleges, additional classrooms and hostels. Later the Schemes have been restructured as Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK).
• Although MSDP is getting implemented, the total expenditure reported for minorities by the central government through MSDP has shown a declining trend in the total expenditure since 2012-13.
• MSDP/PMJVK guidelines should be revised to focus on undertaking initiatives that are need-based instead of topping up approach adopted in the existing Centrally Sponsored Schemes covered under 15 PP. MSDP/ PMJVK should emphasise plans to overcome the local development deficit instead of aiming to saturate the coverage of the already existing national programme. Secondary and senior secondary schools already constructed under MSDP/ PMJVK in many Minority Concentrated Blocks (MCDs) need to be made functional. Further, there is a need for establishing degree colleges and constructing women’s hostels in the MCDs for promoting higher education among the minority communities.
25. “An Inter-ministerial Task Force, constituted under the Chairmanship of Member, Planning Commission, will recommend strategies to address the deficiencies in civic amenities, infrastructure and economic opportunities in 338 identified towns and cities, with a population exceeding 50,000 and having at least 25% minority population”. – NITI Aayog (Erstwhile Planning Commission) and Ministry of Minority Affairs
• An inter-ministerial task force was constituted under the Planning Commission to address the problems related to civic amenities, infrastructure and economic opportunities. The restructured Multi-sectoral Development Programme (MsDP) has identified 66 towns/cities from the list of backward towns/cities with a substantial minority population.
• Later in 2018, Niti Aayog launched the “Aspirational District Programme” shifting the priority to the most backward general districts. Government needs to give more priority to this area.
Measures for Affirmative Actions
26. “A National Data Bank (NDB) will be set up where the relevant data for various socio religious communities (SRCs) will be maintained”. – Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation (MoSPI)
• MoSPI has created a National Data Bank web page on its website where approximately 200 various tables on SRCs are available. However, there is no proper interface on the NDB webpage to properly manage SRC data on various domains and the Ministry of Minority Affairs has not taken any effective steps to coordinate data on minorities from various Ministries/Departments/ State Governments.
27. “The Ministry of Culture will hold an annual meeting with the Central Waqf Council (CWC) to review the list of waqfs, which are under the Archeological Survey of India (ASI)”. -Ministry of Culture
• As per the last annual meetings organised by the Archeological Survey of India (ASI) held with the CentralWaqf council on 12.10.2015, there are 267 Waqf properties, which are to be protected by ASI. M/o Culture has directed the ASI to expedite action for the identification of Waqf properties at the regional level shortly. But no further efforts have been reported.
28. “A suitable agency will be set up for providing financial assistance for the development of Waqf properties to enable Waqfs to generate surpluses for the welfare of the poor”. -Ministry of Minority Affairs
• Despite MoMA constituting the National Waqf Development Corporation (NAWADCO) in 2014 to finance the development of the Waqf properties and more than 80 Waqf properties being identified for development, no single project has been initiated so far anywhere in the country.
29. (A) “A Bill to amend the Waqf Act will be introduced in Parliament after receiving the recommendations of the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) on Waqfs”
• The Waqf (Amendment) Bill, 2013 with proposed amendments in the Waqf Act, 1995, has been passed by both the Houses of Parliament, and the Waqf Amendment Act, 2013 has been enacted.
(B) “Model Waqf rules will be framed and forwarded to States/UTs which have not framed such rules”. -Ministry of Minority Affairs
• Model Waqf Rules have been prepared and circulated among all States / UTs and asked them to adopt those or revise them as per their requirements.
30. “States will be requested to consider amendments to their Rent Control Act (RCA) to exempt Waqf properties from its purview”. -Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs
• 11 States, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal and 3 UTs viz., Chandigarh, Lakshadweep and Puducherry have amended their respective Rent Control Acts to exempt the Waqf properties.
31. “A Bill will be brought before Parliament for providing social security to workers in the unorganized sector, which, inter-alia includes, home-based workers”. – Ministry of Labour & Employment and Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship
• Under the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (erstwhile Ministry of Labour and Employment), an Act has been passed by the Parliament for providing social security to workers in the unorganised sector, which, inter-alia, includes home-based workers. Schemes like Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) to provide smart card based cashless health insurance, including maternity benefits, a cover of Rs. 30,000/- per annum on a family floater basis to BPL families (a unit of five) in the unorganised sector is implemented. More awareness and participation is needed from the unorganised categories and religious minorities.
32. “High Level Committee has been set up to review the Delimitation Act, and the concerns expressed in the Sachar Committee report will be considered in the course of the review”. -Ministry of Law & Justice
• The Delimitation Act, as suggested by the High-level Committee was considered by a group of Ministers and the same was placed before the Cabinet. Based on the decision of the Cabinet, the Delimitation (Amendment) Ordinance 2008 was promulgated which was later replaced by the Delimitation Act, 2008.
33. “Appropriate training modules, films and material for sensitization of Government functionaries, especially field staff, would be prepared and made available to State Governments/UT Administration for use in induction and in-service training programmes”. –Department of Personnel & Training
• Training module on sensitisation of government functionaries on social and economic conditions of the Muslim community in India was prepared by Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT) and shared with all the State Administrative Training Institutes (ATIs) to conduct at least two courses on the subject. During the years 2012-13 and 2013-14, 30 and 40 such programmes were conducted respectively. In the year 2018-19 State ATIs were directed by DoPT to include two programmes in their proposals while seeking the approval of DoPT under the State category DoPT sponsored programmes.
• Since training is a continuous process and State ATIs are one of the key stakeholders in the training eco-system, regular state-level follow up is needed.
34. “A multi-media campaign will be launched to focus on the need for social inclusion”. -Ministry of Information and Broadcasting
• Even though the Ministry of information and broadcasting has taken some steps to disseminate various information in Urdu language, more creative and effective solutions are needed. Many schemes and benefits remain ineffective due to lack of awareness/ communication.
35. “State Governments and UTs will be requested to consider the recommendation for posting of Muslim police personnel in thanas and Muslim health personnel and teachers in Muslim concentration areas. The Ministries of Home Affairs, Health & Family Welfare, Human Resource Development and Department of Personnel & Training will issue appropriate guidelines. Department of Personnel & Training will be the nodal department monitoring this”. -Department of Personnel & Training
• This information is collected by the Ministry of Home Affairs on half-yearly basis. In the first half of 2014, the number of Muslims posted in Thanas were 12,348 out of the total 2,84,350 (4.34%). At the end of 2014 it declined to 3.47%.
• The MHA first half-yearly report 2017 reports posting of 7,651 Muslims out of the total 2,12,244 (3.6%) personnel posted in 4,691 Thanas. As per the second half-yearly report the percentage declined to 2.09%; i.e., 5,073 Muslims posted out of 2,42,541 postings in 4,864 Thanas. This is the statistics from 18 states/union territories in December 2017.
• Overall, from 2014 June to 2017 December, the posting of Muslim police personnel in Thanas declined from 4.34% to 2.09%.
36. “Civil rights centres, initially in Central universities, will be set up to promote the importance of social inclusion”. -Department of School Education & Literacy
• 35 Universities have started centres for studying social exclusion and inclusive policy for minorities and SCs/STs. Out of 1,018 universities in India, the Centre of Equal Opportunity (CEOs) has been established in only 149 universities that constituting only 14.6%.
37. “For facilitating the flow of funds under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM), Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns (UIDSSMT), Integrated Housing and Slum Development Programme (IHSDP) to towns and cities, having a substantial concentration of minority population, necessary steps will be taken to ensure that Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) for such towns and cities include adequate provisions for minorities, as envisaged in the new 15 Point Programme”. -Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs [erstwhile Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation and Ministry of Urban Development]
• MoUD informs that detailed Project Reports (DPRs) submitted by the State Governments do not specifically target the minority concentrated areas. Projects are prepared for a Mission City and its population as a whole.
• Only 25.54% of the project cost for minority-dominated cities/towns for Urban Development projects sanctioned in MC Cities under Basic Services for Urban Poor (BSUP) is allocated to minorities.
• Only 22.51% of the project cost for minority-dominated cities/towns for Urban Development projects sanctioned in MC Cities under the Integrated Housing and Slum Development Programme is allocated to minorities.
• Only 17.01% of the project cost for minority-dominated cities/towns for Urban Development projects sanctioned in MC Cities under the Urban Infrastructure Governance is allocated to minorities.
• Only 9.87% of the project cost for minority-dominated cities/towns for Urban Development projects sanctioned in MC Cities under the Urban Infrastructure Development Scheme for Small and Medium Towns is allocated to minorities.
38. “State Governments will be advised to improve representation of minorities in local bodies on the lines of the initiative taken by the Andhra Pradesh Government”. -Ministry of Panchayati Raj and Ministry of Urban Development
• The Committee advised the state governments to improve the representation of minorities in urban and rural local bodies. 13 states/UTs provided information to the Ministry of Panchayati Raj about the representation of minorities in their rural local bodies; seven states/UTs said minorities are already represented in these bodies or there is a provision for their representation; seven states/UTs did not provide this information, and the remaining states/UTs provided individual responses.
39. “Dissemination of information regarding Health and Family welfare schemes will be done in Urdu and regional languages in such districts blocks and towns, with a substantial minority population. A Basket of choice in contraception will also be made available, along with ensuring easy access to such services”. –Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
• This scheme was launched in 233 high focus districts in 17 States, now being expanded to the entire country. The Department of Health and Family Welfare has advised States/UTs to take effective steps to popularise various health and family welfare services through advocacy and IEC campaigns in Urdu and regional languages in Districts / Blocks / Towns of minority concentration. Only 15 States have given a response to this.
In the changed socio-political milieu in the country, the recommendations of the Sachar Committee Report are being gradually subjected to Euthanasia, by deferring the decisions, cutting short the budget allocations and ignoring or neglecting the recommendations in the report, which would if properly implemented have bettered the socio-economic status of the minority Muslim community in the country.
The failure or the lethargic attitude of the community to proactively involve and ensure to avail the government welfare schemes is also a key factor in getting their rights denied.
1. Status of progress on implementation of the prime minister’s new 15 point programme for welfare of minorities during 2018-19: https://www.minorityaffairs.gov.in/sites/default/files/LSUQ-1940.pdf
2. Project status report of NAWADCO: http://www.nawadco.org.in/page.php?id=36#
3. MAEF Corpus fund: https://www.maef.nic.in/sites/default/files/new-Corpus_Fund.pdf