Laying stress on the development of the minorities in India, the
government Monday proposed to increase the budget for Ministry of
Minority affairs from Rs. 1,740 crore to Rs. 2,600 crore.
"I propose to raise the plan
allocation for the Ministry of Minority Affairs from Rs.1,740
crore to Rs.2,600 crore for the year 2010-11. This marks an
increase of nearly 50 per cent", Union Finance Minister Pranab
Mukherji said in his budget speech February 28.
Aimed at empowering the minorities
in India, Ministry of Minority Affairs was introduced by the
Congress-led UPA government during his first term.
"I am happy to inform the Honourable
Members that we are close to achieving the target of 15 per cent
priority sector lending to minorities in the current year", he
"This will be maintained for the
next three years", he added.
Observing that education is the key to reaping the benefits of the
demographic dividend in the form of a young population, Finance
Minister Pranab Mukherjee also announced more funds
for Maulana Azad Education Foundation and special grants to Aligarh Muslim
University (AMU) for its off campus centers in West Bengal and Kerala.
The finance minister announced
grants of Rs.50 crore each for Aligarh Muslim University's
upcoming campuses at Murshidabad in West Bengal and Malappuram in
Kerala along with Rs.100 crore as a one-time grant to Kerala
Veterinary Animal Science University.
The minister also sanctioned Rs.200 crore
for the Maulana Azad Education Foundation established for the
development of minorities.