Modi govt woos Muslims, restructures flagship scheme for minorities

The minority affairs ministry has restructured its flagship multi-sectoral development programme and renamed it Prime Minister Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) for socio-economic development of the minority communities. PTI file photo

The minority affairs ministry has restructured its flagship multi-sectoral development programme and renamed it Prime Minister Jan Vikas Karyakram (PMJVK) for socio-economic development of the minority communities.

At least 80% of "the resources" under the programme would be utilised for execution of projects pertaining to education, health and skill.

"Minimum 33-40% resources will be earmarked for the creation of assets/facilities for women/girls," the restructured scheme guidelines indicate.

A total of six communities in India have been accorded minority status by the government under Section 2 (c) of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.

As per Census 2011, the overall percentage of minorities in India is about 19.3%, with the population of Muslims being highest at 14.2%, followed by Christians 2.3%, Sikhs 1.7%, Buddhists 0.7%, Jains 0.4% and Parsis 0.006%.

The multi-sectoral development programme was launched by the ministry in 2008 for 90 minority-concentration districts (MCDs) as a special initiative of the follow-up action on the Sachar Committee recommendations.

It is an area development initiative to address the development deficits of minority-concentration areas by creating socio-economic infrastructure and providing basic amenities.

However, the unit of planning for implementation of this programme was blocks, instead of districts.

The restructured programme will be implemented in 870 minority concentration blocks (MCBs), 321 minority concentration towns (MCTs) and 109 minority concentration district headquarters, falling in 308 districts of 32 states and Union territories.

For the implementation of the programme in Karnataka, the ministry has identified a total of 21 districts, which include six blocks and 28 towns. The identified areas include Bhatkal, Mundgod and Puttur blocks, as well as Raichur, Sindhanur, Gangawat, Savanur and Yadgir.

Backwardness indicators

The ministry has identified the minority-concentration areas on the basis of Census 2011. The parameters for determining backwardness of the identified areas include religion-specific socio-economic indicators and basic amenities indicators at the district, block and town levels, a ministry official said.

The PMJVK will be implemented through central and state government agencies. "However, the states may decide to execute the project through any qualified, reputed, experienced agency, including renowned and widely accepted NGOs," the official said.

The projects under the scheme can also be implemented through public-private-partnership mode, the official said.

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Modi govt woos Muslims, restructures flagship scheme for minorities

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