Union Minister for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Friday said the BJP-led NDA government, which was against the minority appeasement policy, has removed the regional and social imbalance in terms of development in the country by its commitment to “inclusive growth”.
Naqvi made the remarks here while addressing a Zonal Coordination Meeting of Ministers, Principal Secretaries, Secretaries incharge of Social Welfare, Minority Welfare of various states.
He said that earlier the Centre used to focus on selected regions for the development process and other regions especially the northeast, had been neglected.
“The Modi government has broken all the barriers of regional and social imbalance in terms of development and connected all the ‘ignored and neglected’ backward areas of the country with the mainstream development process,” Naqvi said, adding that the Centre has demolished the “vote bank politics” and worked with the “nationalistic politics” based on “draft of development”.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s commitment to “Inclusive Growth” has ensured that poor, weaker sections including Minorities have become an equal partner of the development process, he said.
Naqvi said that the present government, keeping in mind the educational empowerment and employment oriented skill development of minority girls, is providing school, college, polytechnic, girls hostel, IT, skill development centre under the “Pradhan Mantri Jan Vikas Karykram” in “backward and ignored” areas which had been deprived of these facilities since the Independence.
“Lack of such facilities was the reason behind low literacy rate among Minorities especially Muslim girls.
“During the last four years, 16 degree colleges, 1,992 school buildings, 37,123 additional classrooms, 1,147 hostels, 173 Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), 48 polytechnics, 38,753 anganwadi centres, 3,48,624 houses, 323 sadbhavna mandaps, 73 residential schools, 17,397 drinking water facilities have been constructed by the Modi government in the minority concentrated areas. This has led to significant improvement in lives of weaker sections, minorities especially women,” he added.
Naqvi added that school dropout rate among Minorities especially Muslim girls, which was earlier more than 70 per cent, has now been reduced to about 35-40 per cent due to awareness and educational empowerment programmes.
“Our goal is to bring it down to zero per cent.”
Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal was present in the meeting.
Besides, Ministers, Principal Secretaries, Secretaries and other senior officials in-charge of social welfare and Minority welfare Departments of Assam, Tripura, Manipur, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Odisha, West Bengal, Jharkhand and senior officials from Union Minority Affairs Ministry attended this important Zonal Coordination Meeting.