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Ensure Haj subsidy funds are used for minority development, Ahmed Patel writes to Naqvi

Ahmed Patel said that while he welcomed the cancellation of the subsidy in accordance with the apex court's direction, he also hoped that the guidelines will be implemented in letter and spirit.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: January 17, 2018 8:00 pm
gujarat rajya sabha elections, Gujarat polls, Ahmed Patel, Amit shah, Smriti irani, Congress, BJP, Gujarat Congress, Congress mp Ahmed Patel (Express Photo by Anil Sharma/file)

A day after the government scrapped subsidy on Haj, Congress leader Ahmed Patel on Wednesday wrote a letter to Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi asking him to spend the funds for the development of minorities, as mandated by the Supreme Court in its 2012 order.

In the letter, Patel wrote while he welcomed the cancellation of the subsidy in accordance with the apex court’s direction, he also hoped that the guidelines will be implemented in letter and spirit. “Available records show that between 2014 and 2017, the Central Government’s grant for Haj has been reduced from Rs 400 crore to Rs 200 crore. I sincerely hope that this reduction in the outlay by nearly Rs 200 crore has been matched by an increased investment in the welfare of the community as mandated by the honourable Supreme Court,” the letter read.

Patel also added that while the court had ordered a “gradual reduction to complete elimination in ten years,” the government “in its wisdom has chosen to reduce the subsidy and eventually eliminate it four years ahead of the 2022 deadline.” He also asked Naqvi to share the details of the expenditure.

Announcing the withdrawal of Haj subsidy, Naqvi on Tuesday said, “This is part of our policy to empower minorities with dignity and without appeasement.”

Also Read | Haj subsidy cancelled: All you need to know about the 85-year-old policy

Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “The government has decided to wind up this subsidy almost four years before the date prescribed by the Supreme Court, we don’t have any issue… I am sure the government will implement the second part of the judgment too… and utilise the money for welfare and education of poor children.” Meanwhile, AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi attacked BJP, calling withdrawal a vote bank politics.


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  1. Peace Parmar
    Jan 18, 2018 at 5:40 am
    Arre ahmed chor BJP is not like your chor group where money of orphans were looted by your pig leader showed beggars are beggars
    1. Lonestar x
      Jan 18, 2018 at 3:17 am
      by what logic is this money owed to minorities it is taxpayer money.
      1. Zen Bhatia
        Jan 18, 2018 at 2:03 am
        The Times Of India Dear Reader, Your comment on the article 'CPM, Owaisi slam govt for end to Haj subsidy' is now displayed on timesofindia . 'Really speaking all the major political parties are in race to appease majority vote bank of Hindus either visiting their temples or wearing their clothes and tilaks and calling conferences and giving them whatever they demand at the cost of all non-Hindu communities. This phenomena is making the path of Hindu militants and right wing groups including RSS and BJP very easy to make India more hard core Hindu nation. If this trend will continue, soon the RSS will take over the command and declare India a Hindu Raj, making non Hindus secondary citizen, and soon the non Hindus will be radicalized and India will be another Beirut. There will be bomb blasts and killings every where, . Only our enemies will laugh on our misery.'
        1. Freak Jesus
          Jan 18, 2018 at 12:46 am
          I am going to give below many facts on Hujj travel so that the users will realize how Hindu tax payers were used to pay for muslims flying for Hujj and no other religious group were compensated not even for their bus or train travel forget air travel. Pre-1947 British Raj era: The Haj subsidy traces its origins to the British colonial era. In 1932, the British colonial government enacted The Port Haj Committees Act, which provided for government funded Haj Committee and named Bombay and Calcutta as two embarkation points for pilgrimage by Muslims in British India. Along with Muslim Personal Law (Shariat) Application Act of 1937, the Haj Committees Act was one of a series of laws passed by the British colonial government. Post independence, Pakistan should have taken over this subsidy as muslims got their own country and were paid 75 crores (750 billion dollars today) by Hindu India after division. Instead, no country even not Pakistan or Bangladesh in the world except Hindu India paid.
          1. Freak Jesus
            Jan 18, 2018 at 12:50 am
            The Haj subsidy was modified in 1973, when the Indian government instead of paying for sea travel as a means of making the Hajj started to pay for Airtravel. The government of India replaced the means of travel to Saudi Arabia from ships to aircraft. The government simultaneously increased the subsidy to cover the difference between sea and air fares. In other words, the extra burden difference between sea and air travel was taken over by the government of India (hindu tax payers) so that muslims still enjoyed heavy subsidies to fly to Jeddah even though a common Indian does not have food to eat or place to sleep forget air travel. Since 1994 the round trip cost to Jeddah, Saudi Arabia has been fixed at ₹12,000 (US$190) per pilgrim, and the government has footed the rest of the bill. In 2007 the government spent ₹47,454 (US$740) per passenger. In the year 2009 the cost was ₹8.26 billion (US$130 million). For past 15 years Saudia has been flying Hujji instead of Air india.
            1. Freak Jesus
              Jan 18, 2018 at 12:52 am
              In 2012, the Supreme Court of India ordered that Haj subsidy must end by 2022. The Supreme Court found that Hajj by Indian Muslims is funded to a substantial extent by the Indian Government. The Court ruled that this subsidy is not only uncons utional but inconsistent with the teachings of Quran. So how can a secular Indian government fund only Indian muslims to fly to jeddah and pay for their travel and food and accommodation? Is that Secularism? And this stupidity was continued even after the country was par ioned and muslims got their own land and money. WHY?
              1. Freak Jesus
                Jan 18, 2018 at 12:54 am
                Do you know that we the tax payers (mostly Hindus since it is a hindu majority country) has paid close to 15 Billion dollars or more for flying muslims for Hujj. This money should have been used for complete up liftment of India and all Indians and not waste on just muslims. This happened while 80 percent of India didnt have enough to eat for many years and no clothes to wear no place to sleep while muslims enjoyed flying in plane to Jeddah. What kind of stupidity is this?
            2. Babu Indian
              Jan 18, 2018 at 12:37 am
              Muslims are a false minority in india . As a single group they are the largest in present India , since followers of dharmic culture who are classified as Hindu are not so bound by religious iden y . This is a myth and a big lie , a large group of 20 CRORE and above people , who shouldnt be here because they divided the land and created islamic Pakistan , who are growing rapidly here , call themselves minority . They will call themselves minority till they become 49.99 percent ( 70 crore ?) . After that can we have a secular india . Those muslims who cry secular here , did they made Pakistan secular , will they make India secular then . Muslims are no way minority in india .
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