TN to accord statutory status to Minorities Commission

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Chennai, Apr 29 (UNI) On the heels of providing exclusive reservation for Muslim and Christian minorities, the Tamil Nadu government today announced according statutory status to the Minorities Commission.

Announcing this in the state assembly, Backward classes Minister K K S S R Ramachandran, replying to the debate on the demand for grants for his department, said the government would soon come out with legislation in this regard.

He said Chief Minister M Karunanidhi has given his consent this morning for according statutory status to the Commission and a Bill to this effect would be introduced soon.

Thanking the government, Mr Peter Alphonse (Cong) said when he told the Chief Minister this morning that Tamil Nadu and Manipur were the only two states in the country which had not given statutory status to the Minorities Commission, he immediately called the officials and gave his nod.

Mr Alphonse said statutory status to the Minorities Commission was an important milestone in the social justice struggle.

As promised in the election manifesto, the DMK government had recently enacted a law providing 3.5 per cent exclusive reservation, each to the Backward class Christians and Muslims.

Earlier, intervening in the debate, Electricity Minister Arcot N Veerasasmy said the government would take all steps to protect 69 per cent reservation for the scheduled caste, schduled tribe and Backward Classes in the state.

The minister was responding to a point of order raised by Mr C V Shanmugam (AIADMK), whether the government would prevail upon the Centre to amend the Constitution to protect 69 per cent reservation in the wake of Supreme Court order to restrict the reservation to 50 per cent.

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