Govt to study Muslim women's concerns

Will take steps to improve their status

Govt to study Muslim women's concerns

The Delhi government is considering a pilot study in northeast Delhi on the concerns of Muslim women.

The Arvind Kejriwal government’s Delhi Minorities Commission (DMC) is looking to rope in NGOs and research institutes to carry out the study in Muslim-dominated areas.

“The ultimate objective of conducting the study is to make recommendations to the government of Delhi to take remedial policy decisions/ measures so as to improve the socio-economic and educational status of Muslim women in minority concentrated areas of Delhi,” a note issued by DMC Deputy Secretary Vikas Goyal said.

The move comes close to the May 15 municipal corporation by-polls but an Aam Aadmi Party leader denied it had any political motives or was aimed at appeasing the Muslim community, which supported AAP in its political debut in Delhi.

Delhi’s Northeast district has the highest density of Muslim population. In the survey, Muslim women respondents would be asked to give their priorities in the descending order on issues likes shelter, education, finance, health, family and entertainment.

The study will gather information on their educational qualifications – whether they studied up to primary, secondary, higher secondary or graduate level, and if they have any professional degree, said an official.

It would also collect data on the rate of literacy, dropout rate and percentage in higher education, he said.

From working Muslim women, the study would collect data like income, working conditions and employment status, he said.

On personal matters, the questionnaire will cover marital status, family composition, membership of any association and source of entertainment.

It will also quiz them on approach and behaviour of people from other communities towards women belonging to the minority community.

Financial and political empowerment of Muslim women would be gauged through parameters like monthly income, bank account holder, savings status, voter card, use of voting right, awareness about public representatives, hospitals used for treatment, life and medical insurances.

An official said Muslim women’s property and building ownership rights, and whether they have been on tours or pilgrimages in the city, country or abroad would also recorded.
Apart from the study on Muslim women’s problems, the DMC also plans a separate study on problems and status of graveyards used by Muslims.

Another study on cemeteries used by Christians and their state is also proposed.
“All organisations with a minimum experience of three years can apply by May 15 for the three independent studies,” said an official.

The commission has advised research organisations to submit their expression of interest in the form of technical bids.

The Muslim population in Delhi is around 21.58 lakh out of the total 1.68 crore.
The ruling AAP’s interest in Muslim community’s problems was also reflected in its Delhi unit chief Dilip Pandey’s recent interaction with Urdu media persons to collect first- hand information.

Ahead of the civic by-polls, the AAP seems to be trying to send signals to Muslim voters to continue supporting the new party which dislodged the Congress as their preferred choice.

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