MLC urges Christians to utilise government's benefits

MLC urges Christians to utilise government's benefits

Brochures being circulated to create awareness in this regard

The state governments’ Chief Whip in Legislative Council Ivan D’Souza said that two lakh brochures have been printed and are being circulated across the state to create awareness among the people belonging to Christian community, on the various facilities provided by the government to them.

Addressing media persons at his office in Mangaluru City Corporation on Friday, he said the government has chalked out various schemes for Christian community, reserving Rs 3,750 crore for minorities in the budget, highest among any of the states in the country, through its department of minority welfare. In this, Rs 800 crore is meant for Christian communities of various disciplines. But only a few Christians are utilising the benefits, he said.

 D’Souza said that in order to create awareness on the programmes, he himself took an initiative to print brochures containing information on schemes such as self-employment schemes, Shrama Shakthi, Arivu loan, National Overseas Scholarship, Diary farming, Ganga Kalyana, Goods and Taxi purchase, Hostel facilities and skill development programmes. A campaign will be conducted for two-and-a-half months in the state, he said.

Training centres

He said that in order to provide free coaching for competitive examinations for students belonging to minorities, along with the existing scholarship schemes, plans are afoot to establish training centres each in four divisions in the state: Hyderabad-Karnataka, Mysuru-Karnataka, Mumbai -Karnataka and Bangaluru Subdivision. Also, minority hostels will be built in the areas having more minority population, he added.

D’Souza said that he has requested the chief minister to convert the State Christian Development Council into a corporation or a board, which can formulate the schemes and implement them by themselves, on the model of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Aadhaar registration

He said a lot of people are yet to get Aadhaar cards and requested the government to extend the time period for enrollment of Aadhaar cards.

The beneficiaries of government schemes are unable to get the facilities as they have not yet got Aadhaar cards, he added.

Naguri Church Chief Priest Fr Mathew Vaz, CSI Church Preist Fr Isaac Palan, former mayor Ashraf , corporator Navin D’Souza and Catholic Sabha, Mangaluru president Anil Lobo were present at the press meet.