Three members of the panel — Justice Sachar, economist Abusaleh Shariff and academician T K Oomen — discussed with experts and politicians what had changed for Muslims in the last six years.
Defending the government, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said that the implementation of the report was not the Centre’s job alone. “Gujarat refused to distribute scholarships to Muslims. In Uttar Pradesh, funds for skill development programme were diverted to other schemes... The concept of minority concentration districts doesn’t work. We need to go for ‘cluster’ approach, because post-1992 there has been ghettoisation of Muslim community in rural and urban areas. So there is a need for a comprehensive survey, and once this is done funds will directly go to clusters,” he said.
Singh added, “There are sections among politicians, bureaucrats and judges who are communal. This has to be fought politically. There is a large presence of communal elements, especially young, on social media networks.”
Minority Affairs Minister K Rahman Khan said that “six years after the Sachar panel report, there’s a need to critically analyse policies”. Stating that schemes are being formulated “by bureaucrats” without “careful discussion”, Khan said that he had no faith in multi-sectoral development programmes.
External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said that the courts were giving mixed signals. “The Supreme Court that allowed the stay on reservation of four per cent to Muslims in Andhra Pradesh to be vacated and reservation be given to them, has stayed the reservation of backward Muslims in another matter.”
Shariff, who has analysed the status of Muslims in a report funded by the US-India Policy Institute and Centre for Research and Debates in Development Policy, admitted “little improvement” on the ground, and also lamented the lack of fundamental shift in politics and policy to help Muslims achieve “mainstreaming aspirations”.
The most worrying indicator, he said, was education.
Shariff said that less than four per cent Muslims have enrolled for MNREGA benefits and only two per cent as job-card holders, and the RTI Act has had “mixed results” in helping Muslims change their lives. He said the government should set up an equal opportunities commission, rather than separate panels addressing discrimination individually.
Muslims are not the only minorities in India. Christians, Sikhs, Buddhits, Parsis, Jains are also minorities. How come no one talks about them? Isnt this a bias/discrimination against the smaller minorities??
Who is to blame except the muslims themselves for blindly following whatever the mullahs,sheikhs and other self appointed religious leaders and quacks command them to do. In Mumbai,Assam, and other parts of the country you have enclaves of Pakis, Bangideshis,Afghanis, etc who are all illegals but the government needs their votes. These are the ones who mix with the local muslims and create problems. It is the same in muslim majority countries which are Islamic republics. These countries even though some of them are rich in oil and gas still the majority of the population are very much worse off than their counterparts in other countries having non muslim majorities. Muslim community leaders should take it upon themselves to improve conditions not a panel of government advisors.
Dear Brother, As a muslim, to claim from the govt is our right. As a citizen of India, we also become equal to the others. We need help from the govt body as other majority people getting in india.