Jain community gets Minority status

Ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, the Jain community was on Monday accorded minority status by the Central government which will enable them to avail of benefits in government schemes and programmes. The decision to grant minority status to the community of about 50 lakh was taken at a meeting of Union cabinet, a day after Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi took up this issue with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. A group of Jains had met Rahul on Sunday to press for their long-standing demand for minority status and Rahul then spoke to Singh in their support. The Jains became the sixth community to have minority status after Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis
Earlier, AICC had said in a release that Jain Samaj leaders had spoken to Rahul about their long-pending demand for minority status for the community and urged him to support their cause. "Rahul recognised the role played by the Jain community in the social, cultural and economic development of the country. He assured the delegation that he would do his utmost to ensure fair and equitable recognition and representation for the Jain community," the release said. Currently, Jains enjoy minority status in some states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. Once recognised as a minority, Jains would get a share in central funds earmarked for welfare programmes and scholarships for the minorities.