Minority status for Hindus too?
Recently, the Supreme Court has questioned the changing stand of the Center on granting minority status to Hindus.
A petition has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking to issue guidelines for granting minority status to the states where the number of Hindus is less.
The Court has expressed displeasure over the frequent change of stand by the Central Government in this matter.
The earlier affidavit filed by the Ministry of Minority Affairs (MoMA) said that the matter is to be decided by the respective states.
However, the latest affidavit states that the power to notify a group as a minority rests with the Centre. However, this issue requires extensive consultation.
Minority status in India-
- The word “minority” has not been defined in the Constitution. In this only the word minority is mentioned. The rights of minorities have been described under Article 29 and 30.
- However, the central government has declared Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and Parsis as ‘minorities’ using the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992.
- The Supreme Court delivered an important judgment in the TMA Pai case of 2002. According to the court, in the determination of linguistic and religious minorities, the ‘state’ should be treated as a unit and not the population of the country as a whole.
Benefits of getting minority status
- Minority communities get the benefit of special schemes run by the Ministry of Minority Affairs.
- They are given the freedom to operate their educational institutions and trusts.
Source – The Hindu