Role of states crucial in minorities’ welfare: Minister

New Delhi: Union Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heltulla on Tuesday said the role of the state governments in the implementation of welfare schemes for the minorities was indispensable.

She sought the help of states in the implementation of such schemes.

“The states and union territories have an indispensable role in the implementation of the welfare schemes for the minorities as they are stakeholders in taking the benefits to the marginalised groups,” Heptulla said while inaugurating a national conference of ministers and secretaries of minority welfare departments in the states and union territories.

The minister urged the participants to monitor the implementation of schemes at the ground level and furnish completion and utilisation certificates in time to enable the Centre to release more funds.

Heptulla said the central government wants to develop waqf properties across the country to increase revenue for minority welfare activities and expected cooperation in this effort.

“With education as the basis of development, the focus is to equip the minority community youth with formal education and skills,” she said.

The ministry awards about 86 lakh scholarships for pre- and post-matric and merit-cum-means scholarships across India. Of these, 30 percent scholarships are earmarked for girls.

The minister expressed concern over the absence of ministers from some states, saying that such a forum calls for cooperation from one and all.