The Jain community became sixth community in India to get minority status by the central government on Monday. Before this Sikhs, Muslims, Christians, Budhists and Parsis were five minority communities in India. This will enable the community to avail benefits in government schemes and programmes for minority communities.
As per and official release, the decision was taken at a cabinet meeting. Surprisingly the decision came just a day after a group of Jains had met Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi to press for their long-standing demand for minority status. In turn he took up this issue with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Once recognized as a minority, the around 50 lakh strong community would get a share in central funds earmarked for welfare programmes and scholarships for minorities. They can also manage and administer their own educational institutions.
Jain community already had minority status in few states of India states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan but the new decision extends this across the country.