Calcutta High Court has ordered West Bengal Government in West Bengal Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (WBMFC) to restrain from conferring any benefit on any person under the relevant scheme of ‘Term Loan Scheme for the Minorities of West Bengal’ as notified on July 16, 2010 pending disposal of the case of one Sanjib Kumar Jain vs WBMFC vide WP No. 10399(W) of 2012.
In his landmark order on July 3, 2013, Justice Sanjib Banerjee asked the State respondents to file affidavit to clear their stand to exclude Jain communities from the State notification upon which the advertisement was published to give term loans to all six minority communities of West Bengal as Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Sikh, Parsee and Jain.
It is alleged in the writ petition filed in the Calcutta High Court that the petitioner, Sanjib Kumar Jain’s prayer for sanction of term loan has been refused on the ground that he does not belong to Muslim community.
Sanjib completed all the formalities but was refused loan time and again by the authorities of WBMFC and finally he was got a clue that one Muslim citizen of Murshidabad has got the loan of Rs. 66,500 depriving his claim in the same period.
Being aggrieved Sanjib filed a writ petition bearing WP No. 10399 (W) of 2012 highlighting his case of deprivation as he is a Jain but not a Muslim.
Actually, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists and Zoroastrians (Parsees) have been notified as minority communities under Section 2 (c) of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992. As per Census 2001, the percentage of minorities in the country is about 18.4 per cent of the total population of the country, of which Muslims are 13.4 per cent; Christians 2.3 per cent; Sikhs 1.9 per cent, Buddhists 0.8 per cent and Parsees 0.007 per cent. But, the 0.4 per cent Jains were not included in the Section 2 (c) of the NCMA, 1992 under a certain conspiracy.
In 2007, Jains were included in the minority list of West Bengal through an important legislation. On September 27, West Bengal government accorded minority status to the Jain community in response to their long-pending demand.
In the website of West Bengal Minorities Development and Finance Corporation, it is clearly stated that, “The government of West Bengal has also notified Jain Community as a Minority Community but as this community is not on the Central Government List, it can avail benefits of only those schemes which are undertaken out of the fund granted by the State Government.”
In the present case of sanction a loan upto Rs one lakh comes under state purview and the loan upto Rs five lakh needs approval of the NMDFC of Central Government As such, the West Bengal State authority can arrange such funds for term loans, etc (upto one lakh) for Jains, when West Bengal government are allocating huge funds for Imam/Muazzin honorarium etc from State revenue, even in an impugned manner. So, the case of deprivation made upon Sanjib Kumar Jain is bad in law and a blatant violation of Rights to Equality.
Three pertinent questions come here for decision that 1. What is the criteria in India for being minority? When 13.4 per cent Muslims (now touching 20 per cent) in the country are considered as minority, why 0.7 per cent Jains are not given minority status? 2. While a Hon’ble Court in U.P. questioned the minority status of 17 per cent Muslims in Uttar Pradesh, then why a huge number of Muslim like 35 per cent Muslims in West Bengal are given Minority status? and 3. In India, under the “Multi Sectoral Development Programme” (MSDP), 99 MCD, 338 Towns and 1228 CD Blocks have been declared as “Minority Concentration districts” ranging the status of lowest 17.63 per cent Muslims (Gulbarga, Andhra Pradesh) to the highest 63.67 per cent Muslims (Murshidabad, West Bengal). There are over 1,200 Blocks/Towns/MCD where Hindus are synchronised as minority maintaining the above parameter. Then why minority Hindus are not given facilities under MSDP there?
Politics in India is empowering such a group of fanatics who does believe more in sharia than Indian Constitution. It may pave another Partition of India.