Chandrababu Naidu had announced several schemes for the benefit of the minorities and women, including the declaration of Urdu as the second official language in four more districts and 50 per cent share for women in all income-generating activities funded by various State-owned corporations. It had been decided to grant coparsenary right to women in the Hindu undivided family. It is a new legislation that would be brought in to provide coparsenary right to women. This right (hitherto enjoyed only by males from the time of birth) would entitle women to have equal rights along with men in the undivided family in respect of property, as well as other matters.
To facilitate implementation of the new schemes for minorities, it was decided to provide an additional Rs 5 crore over and above the Rs 32 crore earmarked in the Budget. The decisions taken in respect of minorities are: declaration of Urdu as second official language in Mahboobnagar, Adilabad, Krishna and Chittoor districts in addition to the existing eight districts, filling up of 802 vacant Urdu teacher posts without any cut-off marks, sanction of 200 primary schools to be run by Government, three B.Ed colleges and onemedical college in private sector and release of funds for construction of new masjids and renovation of existing ones.
The decisions taken in respect of women relate to: 50 per cent of the small savings agents to be picked up from among women, sanction of new houses under the weaker section housing programme and allotment of new ration cards in the name of women and entrusting them with 50 per cent of all the economic support schemes implemented by various corporations. The minorities welfare policy titled `Roshni’ envisages appointment of district minority welfare officers in the four districts where Urdu has been declared as second official language. One post of Urdu translator would be sanctioned to each of the 12 districts where Urdu would be the second official language.
One crore has been earmarked to provide pre-matric scholarships to minority students from 7th to 10th standard. The three new private B.Ed colleges would be located in Medak, Guntur and Nellore districts, while the medical college would come up in Cuddapah district. A study circle would be established in Hyderabad exclusively to coach minority students appearing for competitive examinations. All vacant posts of Unani doctors would be filled by relaxing the rule of reservation, as eligible candidates belonging to SC and ST categories were not available.
The collectors would be directed to immediately identify land and commence work on the construction of nearly 300 shadikhanas which were sanctioned during the previous and current financial year. The management of shadikhanas would be entrusted to a committee comprising elders from the minoritycommunity, a representative of the Urdu academy and the local MRO. The maximum sanction for construction of a new masjid or renovation of an existing one has been enhanced from Rs 25,000 to Rs 35,000. Nearly 40 shopping complexes would be constructed in all district headquarters and some important towns to create self-employment opportunities to minorities. Each district would be given Rs 50 lakh for this purpose. Rs 10 crore would be provided to the minorities finance corporation to provide direct loans (without involving banks) to minorities for self-employment ventures. Fifty per cent of the beneficiaries would be women.
The AP State Minorities Finance Corporation had implemented ‘Dukan-Makan’ (shop & house) scheme for minorities in the state. The Rs 28.5 crore scheme is sponsored by the central and state governments. The beneficiaries under the scheme should possess a piece of land. The corporation had extended a loan of Rs 55,000 for the construction of a shop and shelter. Nearly 5,000 families benefitted from the scheme. Sixty per cent of the beneficiaries would be identified in urban areas and 40 per cent in rural areas. The minorities corporation had spent almost the entire amount of its total budget of Rs 19.2 crore during 2002-03.
The corporation had been allocated Rs 19.6 crore for 2003-04 and the proposed ‘Dukan-Makan’ scheme has not been included in its budget. Nearly 700 mosques and 300 churches were renovated with Governmental assistance. The Government sanctioned Rs. 19 lakhs to the Andhra Pradesh Minorities Welfare Corporation out of Rs. 38.50 crores allotted for minority welfare. `Shaadikhanas’ were constructed in various districts by allotting Rs. 45 crores, he said, and pointed out that 5,000 houses were sanctioned under the `Dukan-Makan’ scheme at an outlay of Rs. 25 crores. The Haj House was built at Hyderabad at a cost of Rs. 10 crores.