The government will bring amendments to the National Commission for Minorities Act 1992 to include a Jain member, Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi told the Rajya Sabha Monday. The House had to be adjourned thrice in the morning as MPs from Congress, SP and Left parties agitated over lack of appointments in statutory commissions for minorities, SC/STs and OBCs.
It began with a zero hour submission by Congress MP Narendra Budaniya about the fact that currently there are no members in the commission. Budaniya alleged the constitutional authority was being systematically weakened by means of “a well thought-out strategy”.
Naqvi responded the matter of making changes in the NCM Act, which would provide for a Jain member, is under process. Jains were declared a minority a few years ago. “We will soon bring it to the cabinet and then to Parliament,” Naqvi said.
SP members trooped into the well, followed by those of the Congress and the Left, leading to an adjournment by deputy chairman P J Kurien.
Later, CPM MP Sitaram Yechury said none of the four statutory commissions – for scheduled castes, for scheduled tribes, for backward classes and for minorities – is fully constituted. “Is this the ‘minimum government, maximum governance’ that the BJP had promised when it came to power?”