Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on December 27 highlighted his ministry's priority for people of the minority community in the year to come and said educational empowerment and increasing literacy rate among them are the two areas of focus in the coming year.
"Educational empowerment, especially education for girls, is our focus and our effort is to increase literacy rate of the communities on par with other communities," the union minister told PTI.
According to reports, the government has in the last fiscal increased the budget of the minority ministry to Rs 4195.48 crore for 2017-18 from Rs 3827.25 crore in 2016-17. It is an increase of about 9.6 per cent over the last fiscal.
Earlier speaking at a function in Kerala on December 25, the minister said his ministry was working to ensure welfare of the students of minority community through affordable, accessible and quality education.
"The Central government has been working with commitment to provide affordable and quality education to students of all sections, including the minorities," he said, adding, “In the last six months, thousands of educational institutions catering to minority communities, including madrasas, have been brought into mainstream education system by connecting 3Ts – Teacher, Tiffin and Toilet."
Saying that many schemes of his ministry have been successful in providing employment opportunities to more than 50 lakh people of minority community, he said his government is also planning to provide Rs 51,000 as Shadi Shagun to the girls who complete their graduation.
“The schemes of Minority Ministry such as Hunar Haat, Seekho aur Kamao, Nai Manzil, Gharib Nawaz skill Development Scheme and Nai Roushini have succeeded in providing employment opportunities to more than 50 lakh people from the minority communities,” the minister said, adding, “The Centre will provide Rs 51,000 as Shadi Shagun to the girls who complete their graduation.”
He also highlighted the success of minority students in Civil Services Examinations and said over 100 youths from the minority community have been selected for it.
“As many as 100 youths from minority communities have been selected in the Civil Services Examinations this year out of whom 52 are from the Muslim community,” he said, adding, “This is the first time since Independence, the minority community students have been selected in the civil services in such a large number.”
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