Panel to be set up to look into woes of Muslims: Parrikar

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The Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Parrikar speaking at an interactive session organised by the Goa Muslim Forum in Panaji on Saturday

PANAJI: Assuring the Goan Muslims to meet their long-pending demands and resolving nagging issues, the Chief Minister, Mr Manohar Parrikar on Saturday announced that a 10-member advisory panel would be constituted to look into the woes of Muslim community in Goa.

Speaking at an interactive session organised by the Goa Muslim Forum in the city, Mr Parrikar assured to give representation in jobs for Muslims by 7-8 per cent in government and semi-government offices.

Mr Parrikar said he would give representation of 7 per cent to Muslims in the forthcoming recruitment rally for 1500 personnel for the police force.

If Muslim youths are interested in self-employment schemes they can very well take the benefit of Chief Minister’s Rozgar Yojana, he said, adding that all Muslims can avail the benefits of government schemes like DSS scheme, scheme for girl child and others.

"Give me just two months and I would strive to solve all the major problems faced by the community. Even azaan call would be allowed through speakers as it is permissible. But in certain cases where court has objected, I cannot interfere,’’ Mr Parrikar maintained.

Reposing his faith in Muslim community, the Chief Minister observed that backwardness in education was seriously affecting Muslims, and added if there was any problem relating to education of the community he would resolve it.

"Even after extending all the benefits, I will not seek any political mileage from the community, and if the BJP deviates from its path then you have every right to dump it also," he stated.

Speaking on the illegal structure in the PDA colony at Porvorim, the Chief Minister said he was deadly against such structures. Regarding the objections to construction of religious structures, he said this could be sorted out with mutual understanding between the disputing parties.

The Chief Minister said he would try to solve issues related to burial grounds of different communities.

Replying to various aspects raised by Urdu schoolteachers over the mid-day meal scheme, he assured that mid-day meals for higher class students would be provided through reliable self-help groups.

On subsidy for Haj pilgrimage, the Chief Minister promised to look into the quota extension and said the government would have to work out modalities for extending concessions on par with 80 per cent subsidy, which has been proposed for pilgrimages to Vailankani (Tamil Nadu), Shirdi (Maharashtra) and Ajmer (Rajasthan).

The GMF president, Mr Iftikhar Shaikh spoke on how Muslims suffered during the Congress regime.

The Milli Council chief in Goa, Mr Iqbal Mohiddin, the chairman of Anjuman Nurul Islam, Mr Shaikh Hamid, Dr Shakoor among others who spoke on the occasion.