'Funds meant for minorities welfare looted since Independence'

'Funds meant for minorities welfare looted since Independence'

In a veiled attack on Congress, Union minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi today alleged that since Independence funds meant for welfare of minorities were not well spent and "looted" by middlemen and "power brokers".

"Much has happened in the past six decades but it can be clearly seen that justice has not been done with regard to socio-economic and educational empowerment of minorities. There can be vote-bank politics behind it or other things, I don't want to delve into it," Naqvi claimed.

The Union Minister of State for Minority Affairs was speaking at the inauguration of Central Waqf Bhawan, where Cabinet Minister for Minority Affairs Najma Heptulla was also present.

He said judging from the "amount spent since Independence" in the name of education, development and empowerment of minorities, there "should not have been a single person" belonging to these sections, below the poverty line.

"The money was not spent well and middlemen and power brokers continued to loot that money. We need to control such elements and this government has done that," Naqvi alleged.

He said it was a "priority" of the Modi government to ensure that every penny is well spent for the benefit of the people. Naqvi also claimed that he had travelled to across states but the impact of money spent by states "cannot be seen" on the ground.

In a statement released by his office, Naqvi also said that "political secularists" should desist themselves from creating an atmosphere of fear among the minorities and misguiding them for furthering their political interests.

"There was a competition among the so-called secularists to exploit these communities politically. Due to such approach, development of minorities especially Muslims has remained on papers only," he said.

Minority communities especially Muslims, should assess the central government on the basis of its work and not from the eyes of those people who are responsible for political exploitation of the Muslim community, he claimed.

The minister also said there was a need for a war-like campaign to free waqf properties from the clutches of "waqf mafias".

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