The West Bengal government will reserve for minorities, 15 per cent of the funds provided in the financial plans of several departments. According to the 2001 census, minorities make up 27 per cent of the state's population.
The decision follows the Prime Minister's 15-point programme for minority welfare.
The Minority Development and Welfare department on Tuesday asked eight departments to spend 15 per cent of their funds on schemes and projects meant for minorities.
The departments include finance, panchayats, urban development, municipal affairs, women and child development, school and technical education and disaster management.
The schemes will include those sponsored by both the Centre and the state, like the Integrated Child Development Services, Swarnajayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana, Swarnajayanti Saharirozgaryojana and the Indira Awas Yojana.
The notification asks the departments to identify beneficiaries of the new 15-point programme in such a manner that the stipulated target percentage and outlay for minorities were maintained.
Minority Development Minister Abdus Sattar has also fixed targets for departments on how much they have to spend for the minority community.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had asked all chief ministers to fix targets for minority welfare projects under the 15-point programme.
He also stressed the need to have a mechanism and monitoring cell to supervise and review the implementation. A state-level committee has been constituted to monitor the implementation of the Prime Minister's 15-point programme for this.
The committee will have 18 principal secretaries of departments as members and the minister as chairman. Moreover, there will be representatives from reputed NGOs. The committee will meet once every quarter.
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