Ten years after Sachar Report

There’s been no major change in the condition of India’s Muslims. Here are the numbers:

Written by ZEESHAN SHAIKH | Updated: December 26, 2016 8:40 am
Sachar report, Sachar report details, Sachar report progress, muslims, india muslims, muslims in india, indian muslims, muslims india, india news The Sachar Committee said India’s Muslims were more backward than even the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes. (Source: Representational image/Reuters file)

On November 30, 2006, the 403-page report of the Sachar Committee, on the social, economic and educational condition of Muslims in India, was tabled in Parliament. The Committee, headed by former Chief Justice of Delhi High Court Rajinder Sachar, was set up soon after the UPA 1 government took over, and it submitted its findings in less than 2 years.

The Report highlighted a range of disabilities faced by the community, and made a slew of recommendations to address the situation. It placed Indian Muslims below Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in backwardness. Among the many issues it highlighted were the huge mismatch between the percentage of Muslims in the population and in decisionmaking positions such as the IAS and IPS, and the general poor representation of the community in the police.

Sachar report, Sachar report details, Sachar report progress, muslims, india muslims, muslims in india, indian muslims, muslims india, india news The Report highlighted a range of disabilities faced by the community, and made a slew of recommendations to address the situation. It placed Indian Muslims below Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in backwardness.

An analysis of government data show that most indicators have not seen significant improvement in the years since the Report was submitted. In some cases things seem to have, in fact, deteriorated — in 2005, for example, the share of Muslims among India’s police forces was 7.63%; in 2013, it fell to 6.27%. The government subsequently stopped releasing data on police personnel broken down by religion.

In the years both preceding and following Sachar, Muslims continued to have the lowest average monthly per capita expenditure (MPCE) among all communities. The work participation rate for Muslim men increased only slightly to 49.5% in 2011 from 47.5% in 2001; for Muslim women, the increase was even smaller, from 14.1% in 2001 to 14.8% in 2011.

Sachar report, Sachar report details, Sachar report progress, muslims, india muslims, muslims in india, indian muslims, muslims india, india news Only 3 out of 100 IAS, IPS are Muslim.

Perhaps the most telling figures are in the IAS and IPS, the country’s top officialdom. The Sachar Committee recorded the percentage of Muslims in the IAS and IPS as 3% and 4% respectively. These numbers were 3.32% and 3.19% respectively on January 1, 2016, Home Ministry data show. The fall in Muslim representation in the IPS was due primarily to a steep fall in the share of Muslim promotee officers in the IPS — from 7.1% in the Sachar Report to merely 3.82% at the beginning of 2016.

As per the Census of 2001, Muslims were 13.43% of India’s population; in 2011, they were 14.2%. The increase of 24.69% in the population of Muslims between the two Censuses was the smallest ever recorded for the community.

The sex ratio among Muslims remained better than that of India overall in both 2001 and 2011, and the percentage of Muslims living in urban centres too remained higher than the national average in both Censuses.

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