ANDHRA PRADESH

Rs. 1,500 crore sought for minority welfare

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: MIM floor leader in A.P. House, Akbaruddin Owaisi has sought an annual budget of Rs 1,500 crore for minorities in Andhra Pradesh in proportion to their population and complimented the Congress government for various initiatives taken for their welfare.

Participating in a debate on minority welfare in the Assembly on Monday, he wanted the Sachar Committee recommendations and the Prime Minister’s 15-point programme to be implemented to make minorities reasonably empowered.

He criticised the government for allotting Wakf lands in Hyderabad worth Rs 14,000 crore to companies like Microsoft, Wipro, Lanco and the Indian School of Business without ensuring that a single rupee accrues for the welfare of minorities.

Land was given to Lanco for setting up an IT park but it was being used for residential purpose. The lands should be deemed as given for lease and the fund-starved Wakf Board an annual share of Rs. 100 crore from the rents thus obtained. Christine Lazarus (Nom.) sought Scheduled Caste status for Dalit converts. She also sought separate legislation to protect Christian properties in line with a House Committee report. T. Devender Goud (TD) opposed reservation to Muslims on the basis of religion but sought the same facility to them as a backward social group. M. A. Gafoor (CPI-M) criticised the city police for picking up and torturing Muslim youth for questioning in connection with the recent bomb blasts in Hyderabad, instead of tracking down the real culprits.

G. Kishen Reddy (BJP) sought firm action against the escalated ISI activity in the State.

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