Karnataka minister questions sanction of funds for minorities in BJP MLA’s constituency

08:37 PM Feb 19, 2024 | PTI |

Bengaluru: Karnataka Housing and Minorities Welfare Minister B Z Zameer Ahmed Khan on Monday wondered why development funds for minorities should be sanctioned in a BJP MLA’s constituency who spoke ill of Muslims.


Khan’s statement in the Karnataka assembly led to a commotion as the BJP legislators said this was discriminatory and blocked government money for the welfare of minorities.

During the question hour, Shikaripura MLA B Y Vijayendra, who is also the BJP state president, asked Khan about the funds released for the development of minorities’ colonies.

He accused the government of releasing Rs 1,000 crore for the minorities when there was a severe drought in the state and farmers were waiting for support.

Khan, who holds the Housing, Wakf and Minorities Welfare portfolio, said Chief Minister Siddaramaiah did not release Rs 1,000 crore but prepared an action plan of Rs 1,000 crore which was stretched for three years. The grant allocated for the development of minorities’ colony in the budget is Rs 250 crore and an additional Rs 50 crore has been earmarked under the Panchayat Development Plan. All put together, it is only Rs 300 crore but only Rs 165 crore has been released, Khan explained.


He also pointed out that the minorities have not been given even one per cent of the Rs 3.71 lakh crore budget.

The Minister said the government has put the minority colonies into A, B and C categories based on the population.

To this, BJP MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal said there are 1.2 lakh Muslims in Vijayapura constituency but no funds have been released.

Zameer said, “Should you be given grants? Do you want grants? After becoming MLA you said no Burqa-clad woman and no one with a beard should approach me. We will not do anything for Muslims. How can we give you grants?” The BJP MLAs retorted saying that being a minister he should not have said that.

“This is the Government’s fund and not Zameer Ahmed Khan’s money,” former minister Dr C N Ashwath Narayan said.

Former chief minister Basavaraj Bommai advised Khan to answer the political questions in a political manner outside the assembly and not inside the House. “Don’t you want the minorities’ colony in Vijayapura to be developed when there is a huge Muslim population there? Will you be the protector of minorities by excluding 1.2 lakh minorities in Yatnal’s constituency,” Bommai said.


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