Punjab government turns new leaf for welfare of Muslims

Punjab government has taken a slew of measures for the welfare of the minority community of Muslims in the state. Apart from issuing instructions for ensuring that the rights and safety of minority community are taken care of well, the Parkash Singh Badal government has ensured that the education institutes and the burial places which are directly linked with the minority communities are looked after and get due attention.

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More place for burial and better education institutes

With this objective in mind, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal last year sanctioned Rs 70 lakh for the upgradation of burial places and madrassas all over the state. The initiative was one of the several measures which the government has been taking from time to time for Muslims in the state. In fact Chief Minister Badal has been regularly meeting with the
representatives of minority communities to keep abreast of the issues and problems concerning minorities in the state. Apart from this the Chief Minister has also been keen on initiatives for setting up a modern school for the children of minorities wherein they could be imparted quality education. He has already issued instructions for grant of financial assistance and for giving land for setting up the modern institution.

The government is also drawing on the modalities for providing more land for burial places in villages and towns through panchayats and municipal committees. This is being done in accordance with the requirement mentioned in a policy framed by the department of rural development and local government. “The SAD-BJP alliance is committed to ensure welfare and development of all the communities belonging to different castes and religions as our great gurus, saints, seers, and prophets have disseminated the message of universal brotherhood, amity, and religious tolerance,” Badal had told a delegation of minorites while assuring them that all possible help and cooperation would be extended for the welfare and prosperity of Muslims in the state.

In fact his government is now taking more steps to bridge the communication gap between the state administration and the different communities in a bid to ensure effective and prompt redressal of their grievances.

Badal’s insistence prompts Centre too

The state government’s insistence to the centre for helping minorities has also led to a strong backing by the union government which has now proposed new skill development and awareness schemes for Muslims in the state.

The ministry of minority affairs recently declared to introduce new schemes in district Bathinda with an aim to develop skills and increase job opportunities for minorities in the state. The district, has a significant presence of Muslim population.

Seekho or Kamao

Seekho aur kamao (Learn and earn) is a skill development initiativefor minorities that is being introduced in district Bathinda. Besides there are also plans to introduce other schemes for preserving the heritage of traditional arts/crafts of minorities and builds capacity among traditional artisans and craftsmen.  “We have planned a module which aims at providing skill training to school drop-outs in the villages around Bathinda. The objective of module is to make youngsters well versed with the use of computers and the new farming techniques. The objective is also to ensure that they are made aware about the correct prices of seeds and tools available in the market,” said Union minister of minority affairs Najma Heptulla.

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