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Year End Review 2019: Ministry of Minority Affairs

  • 02 Jun 2020
  • 9 min read

Important Schemes and Policies

Pradhanmantri Jan Vikas Karykram

  • 104 Common Service Centres have been approved across the country under the scheme.
  • These centres will work as a single-window assistance centre for the needy people to provide information regarding Central Government and State Governments schemes as well as to assist them in getting benefits of these welfare schemes.
  • The programme aims to develop socio-economic and basic amenities assets like school, college, polytechnic, girls hostel, ITI, skill development centre etc for the minority communities.

Begum Hazrat Mahal Girls Scholarships

  • Scholarships for economically backward girls belonging to the six notified Minority communities.

Gharib Nawaz Employment Scheme

  • Was launched so that short term job oriented skill development courses may be provided to minorities’ youth in order to enable them for skill based employment.

Seekho aur Kamao

  • This is a placement linked skill development scheme for minorities aiming to upgrade the skills of minority youth in various modern/traditional skills depending upon their qualification, present economic trends and market potential, which can earn them suitable employment or make them suitably skilled to go for self-employment.
  • It is a skill development scheme for youth of 14 - 35 years age group and aiming at improving the employability of existing workers, school dropouts etc.

Nai Manzil

  • A scheme for formal school education & skilling of school dropouts launched in Aug. 2015.

Usttad (Upgrading the Skills and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development)

  • Launched in 2015, the scheme aims to preserve the rich heritage of traditional arts/crafts of minorities.
  • The scheme aims at capacity building and updating the traditional skills of master craftsmen/artisans; documentation of identified traditional arts/crafts of minorities; set standards for traditional skills; training of minority youths in various identified traditional arts/crafts through master craftsmen; and develop national and international market linkages.

Nai Roshni

  • Launched for leadership development of women belonging to minority communities.

Hunar Haat

  • Launched to provide market and employment and employment opportunities to master artisans, craftsmen and traditional culinary experts.
  • Hunar Haat is an exhibition of handicrafts and traditional products made by artisans from the minority communities.

Important Facts

  • 6 Minority Communities in India: Jain, Parsi, Buddhist, Christian, Sikh and Muslim.
  • The term "Minority" is not defined in the Indian Constitution. However, the Constitution recognises only religious and linguistic minorities.
  • Article 29: It provides that any section of the citizens residing in any part of India having a distinct language, script or culture of its own, shall have the right to conserve the same.
    • It grants protection to both religious minorities as well as linguistic minorities.
  • Article 30: Under the article, all minorities shall have the right to establish and administer educational institutions of their choice.
    • The protection under Article 30 is confined only to minorities (religious or linguistic) and does not extend to any section of citizens (as under Article 29).
  • Article 350-B : Originally, the Constitution of India did not make any provision with respect to the Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities. But, the Seventh Constitutional Amendment Act of 1956 inserted Article 350-B in the Constitution.
    • It provides for a Special Officer for Linguistic Minorities appointed by the President of India.
    • It would be the duty of the Special Officer to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards provided for linguistic minorities under the constitution.
  • National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992: The Act defines a minority as “a community notified as such by the Central government.''
    • Under this Act, the government formed the National Commission for Minorities which consist of Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson and five Members.
    • The five Members including the Chairperson shall be from amongst the minority communities.
    • The commission monitors the working of the safeguards provided in the Constitution and in laws enacted by Parliament and the State Legislatures.
  • National Commission for Minorities observes the 18th December as Minorities Rights Day every year.
    • The day marks the adoption of the “Declaration on the Rights of Persons belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities” by the United Nations in 1992.


  • India has become the first country in the entire world which has made the entire Haj 2020 process 100% digital.
  • Online application, E-Visa, Haj mobile app, “E-MASIHA” health facility, “E-luggage pre-tagging” providing all information in India itself regarding accommodation/transportation in Makkah Madinah have been provided to Indian Muslims going for Haj.
  • “E-MASIHA” (E Medical Assistance System for Indian Pilgrims Abroad), is an online system to create and maintain the complete health database of Indian pilgrims along with doctors’ prescriptions, medical treatment as well as medicine disbursals. It has been developed to deal with any emergency in Makkah-Madinah.


  • 100% digitisation of Waqf properties across the country has been completed.
  • A programme on war footing has been launched for 100 per cent Geo tagging and digitalisation of Waqf properties across the country to ensure these properties can be utilised for welfare of the society.
  • Central Waqf Council is a statutory body under the administrative control of the Ministry of Minority Affairs was set up in 1964 as per the provision given in the Waqf Act, 1954 as Advisory Body to the Central Government on matters concerning the working of the Waqf Boards and the due administration of Auqaf.
    • However, the role of the Council was expanded significantly under the provisions of the Waqf (Amendment) Act, 2013.
    • The Council has been empowered to advise the Central Government, State Governments and State Waqf Boards.


  • Waqf is the property given in the name of God for religious and charitable purposes.
  • In legal terms, permanent dedication by a person professing Islam, of any movable or immovable property for any purpose recognised by the Muslim law as pious, religious or charitable.
  • A waqf can be formed through a deed or instrument, or a property can be deemed waqf if it has been used for religious or charitable purposes for a long period of time.
    • The proceeds are typically used to finance educational institutions, graveyards, mosques and shelter homes.
  • A person creating the waqf cannot take back the property and the waqf would be a continuing entity.
  • A non-Muslim can also create a waqf but the individual must profess Islam and the objective of creating the waqf has to be Islamic.
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