Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Is this allowed?

  • Since the image above is not clear, I will reproduce the text of the ad here:
    Getting equipped for a better future.
    Government of India offers free coaching and allied schemes to candidates belonging to minorty communities.
    If you are a student, belonging to the Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Buddhist or Zoroastrain (Parsi) communities, notified as minority communities under Section 2(c) of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992, you are eligible to apply for the coaching programme.
    For entrance admission test of technical/ professional courses such as engineering, law, medical, management, information technology, etc.
    Competitive examinations for recruitment to services under the Central and State government including police/ security forces, public sector enterprises, railways, banks etc.
    Coaching for jobs in the private sector, such as information technology, airlines, BPO, hospitality etc.
    Remedial coaching at undergraduate and post-graduate levels to improve academic knowledge and enable the student to complete the course successfully,
    100% financial assistance will be provided to the selected coaching/ training institutes and the institutes imparting remedial tuition.
    Candidates must possess the requisite educational qualification for admission to the desired course/ recruitment examination.
    The annual income of the parents or guardian of the beneficiay should not exceed Rs.2.50 lakhs from all sources.

    This is a superb initiative. Providing the additional assistance to poor students who are on the fringes of higher education is a noble step and will help elevate the general level of educational literacy by giving just the nudge required.

    The only catch is the ministry that is doing all this! It is the Ministry of Minority Affairs!!!

    Now what beats me is that why should the religion of the recipients of this largesse matter? There are such disadvantaged poor students belonging to all religion who would benefit greatly from the scheme. So, by granting this only to minorities, doesn't this become a form of discrimination on the basis of religion? Is education a matter which should be treated like this?

    Isn't every citizen entitled to equal opportunities in education regardless of their religious beliefs?

    Does the Constitution allow such form of discrimination?

    Is there any other country in this world which discriminates against their majority community in this way?

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