Minorities panel draws its remit

By Moderator July 30, 2019 12:15


The National Commission of Minorities (NCM) has refused to entertain a plea to declare Hindus a “minority community” in those States where they do not form a majority of the population.

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  • The NCM was responding to a petition filed by advocate Ashwini Upadhyay to either frame guidelines for identification of minorities at the State level or use the powers under Section 2(c) of the NCM Act of 1992 to declare Hindus a minority in States where they do not form the majority of the population.
  • A report of its sub-committee, which was approved and adopted by the NCM on July 26, said the role of the minorities commission was not to declare new minority communities but to, instead, work and ensure the progress and development of minorities and protect their religious, cultural and educational rights.
    • The NCM formed a sub-committee of George Kurian, Manjit Singh Rai and Atif Rasheed, which met five times between February and April to deliberate on the issue.
    • The NCM has no such jurisdiction to declare minorities. The repository of such powers to declare a community as minority lies with the Central government. It cannot be usurped by the NCM, the report said
      • Section 2(c) of the NCM Act itself clearly states that a community is notified as “minority” only by the government.

National Commission for Minorities

  • The Union Government set up the National Commission for Minorities (NCM) under the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.
  • Six religious’ communities, viz; Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Zoroastrians (Parsis) and Jains have been notified in Gazette of India as minority communities by the Union Government all over India.
    • Original notification of 1993 was for Five religious communities Sikhs, Buddhists, Parsis, Christians and Muslims.
  • However, Constitution of India doesn’t define the word ‘Minority’ but has used the word minorities considering two attributes religion or language of a person.
  • For minorities Constitution of India has envisaged a number of rights and safeguards.

Source: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/minorities-panel-draws-its-remit/article28752654.ece

By Moderator July 30, 2019 12:15