Dina Nath Mishra
While dealing with a PIL, the two-member bench of the Delhi High Court raised some pertinent questions. Is the UPA Government not appeasing the minority community and only ignoring the majority?, was one raised during the hearing of the implementation of Sachar Committee recommendations for Muslim welfare.
The court asked: "Is this meant to appease some community? A lot of money is spent in a welfare State, is it that you (Centre) spend it only for one minority community?" Justice Thakur, the senior judge on the bench, interrupted the Additional Solicitor General on the Centre's actual intention behind setting up the Sachar panel: "If you intend to fight poverty, cut across religions and communities and fight. Never mind whether it is a Hindu poor or a Muslim poor. When you say you will spend more for this minority community... does it mean you will spend less for the majority community?"
The bench wondered why, out of all minorities, only Muslims had been chosen. Government counsel contended that the PIL was politically motivated and the court should refrain from deciding on such issues. "This is a political issue which cannot be decided in court. It is to be decided by people in the election."
The bench observed: "This is an unconstitutional move by the Government." The constitutional position according to Articles 266 and 283 of the Constitution is that not even a rupee can be drawn from the Consolidated Fund of India, especially for a particular community. It also goes against Article 15 which says that the State cannot discriminate between the citizens on grounds of religion, caste and gender.
This year, Finance Minister P Chidambaram made a mockery of the Government's constitutional obligation in paras 43, 44 and 47 wherein he mentioned the Sachar Committee recommendations while allocating funds to Muslims.
It seems that this UPA Government does not care at all about constitutional provisions. I am not referring to what happened in Goa, Bihar and Jharkhand. One of the cases went to Supreme Court and the Governor had to resign and status quo ante restored. In yet another case, the Supreme Court declared the IMDT Act unconstitutional. It is noteworthy that more than two crore Bangladeshis infiltrated into various parts of the country with active support from the UPA Government.
The Supreme Court termed it demographic invasion of India but who cares? The Central as well as State Governments continue to safeguard the interests of the infiltrators.
Similarly, regarding the minority character of Aligarh Muslim University, HRD Minister Arjun Singh unilaterally declared an increase of seats for Muslims in professional courses. The Allahabad High Court declared it unconstitutional. The Andhra Government announced five per cent reservation for Muslims in Government jobs and educational institutions. It, too, violated the constitutional provisions. But the Government did it. Ultimately, the Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional. But the Andhra Government stubbornly selected a number of Muslim castes and enforced it. The Congress damned the Constitution. The list is endless. I don't remember if a month passed when something was not doled out by the Government to Muslims. Why?
The Congress ruled the country unhindered for more than three decades with votebank politics combining Muslims, Harijans and the slogan of "Garibi Hatao." Wherever the non-BJP alternative was available, Muslims shifted their vote from the Congress. Meanwhile, Kanshi Ram consolidated scheduled caste votes in an unprecedented way and they, too, deserted the Congress. What happened when these two blocks shifted away from Congress en masse is best exemplified in UP.
All that now remains there is a skeleton. After coming to power, the first concern of the mandateless conglomerate lead by the Congress, was to re-capture the Muslim votebank by hook or by crook.
It gave birth to the Sachar Commission. Its report reads like a compilation of complaints and demands from Sir Sayyid's time to 1946. The report fudged data to suit the master's dictat.
In nine major States, India Muslims are better off than Hindus. Percentage-wise, more Muslims live in cities with better civic amenities. Their child mortality rate is less than the Hindus'. Their life expectancy, too, is better than Hindus.
Muslims are backward in Bihar and West Bengal but who is responsible for it if not those who ruled these States for more than 45 years? In half of India, Muslims are better educated. But Sachar was ordered by the Government to prepare a report wherein appeasing Muslims could be justified and he obliged his masters.
The Government wanted to extend it to the Armed Forces also. But this did not materialise, thanks to the three heads of Defence Forces who were against caste and religion-based data in the forces.
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IMDT Act - an Overview of its Enactment to Stuck down by SC