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Gujarat spends more, gets good rating

Gujarat spends more, gets good rating

Publication: Hindustan Times
Date: February 26, 2008

The UPA government's constant tirade about Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi being anti-minorities has not reflected in the Centre's own stock-taking report on minority welfare. In fact, the Minority Affairs Ministry has given a positive rating to the work done in Gujarat for minorities.

The performance of several Congress-ruled states has been found to be poor. The report puts a question mark on the UPA's performance in the area of minority welfare even though the government claims it is implementing most of the Sachar panel recommendations for the uplift of minorities, especially Muslims.

In an evaluation report of the Prime Minister's 15 Point Programme for Minorities, the Minority Affairs Ministry has rated the performance of most NDA rules states as 'good' or 'fair'. The only Congress ruled state to get a good rating was Haryana.

Gujarat, the state said to be most averse to the welfare of minorities, has one of the best ratings when it comes to spending under the nine schemes of the programme and building infrastructure. Its spending was more than 50 per cent in 2007, thereby earning a 'good' rating.

However, ministry officials suspect that the Gujarat government may have diverted funds meant for minorities to non-minority areas, a charge made by UPA during Gujarat elections last year. Other NDA ruled states - Orissa, Uttrakhand and Rajasthan - have also been rated as 'good'.

What may not be a good election slogan for UPA is that Congress ruled states like Delhi, Andhra Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir have been rated as the worst-performing states with a spending of less than 30 per cent. Even West Bengal, ruled by the Left Front, a strong UPA government ally, has been rated among the worst performers.

The only NDA in this category is Punjab. Among the states rated 'fair' with a spending of 30-50 per cent were Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Bihar, Kerala and Assam.

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