No Muslim student will lose out on scholarship: CM

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan  

Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday sought to assuage the apprehension that Muslim students would lose out on "merit-cum-means” scholarships due to the 2011 population census based restructuring of the educational endowment for academically and socially backward minority community pupils.

“Not a single application for a scholarship from an eligible Muslim student will be rejected,” Mr. Vijayan said.

The High Court had found the earlier allocation in the 80:20 proportion was flawed. It directed the government to rectify the anomaly based on the 2011 population census date.

The government constituted a three-member committee, which studied the issue. Various political parties of different ideological hues arrived at a general agreement to abide by the High Court direction at an all-party meeting convened by the government in May.

The Left Democratic Front (LDF) government had extended the scholarship to students from other minority communities who suffered similar backwardness instead of restricting the grant to the Muslim population alone.

“It is an occasion for everyone to be happy. All have gained. Instead, the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) is sowing seeds of discontent in society. It is a dangerous gambit. Incendiary rhetoric will only help divide society. Everyone should avoid falling into the trap,” he said.

Mr. Vijayan pointed out that Leader of the Opposition V.D. Satheesan had welcomed the award. He had correctly inferred that the restructured award had caused no loss to the Muslim community. The rectification also benefited other minority communities. The IUML later arm-twisted Mr. Satheesan into mouthing their opinion.

He said it was erroneous to compare the scholarship award for educationally backward minority community students with the reservation policy.

The latter addressed social backwardness. Mr. Vijayan said the falsehood that the government had reset the scholarship structure to advantage socially and educationally forward Christians was “dangerous and divisive propaganda.” The IUML had no cause for the complaint. It’s stance on the issue would not augur well for social harmony, Mr. Vijayan said.

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Printable version | Sep 21, 2021 3:46:02 PM |

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