The government on Monday promised to implement the Sachar Committee report on status of minorities but stopped short of assuring reservation for Dalit Muslims.
"Sachar Committee's recommendations will be implemented," Minorities Affairs Minister AR Antulay said replying to supplementaries during Question Hour in Rajya Sabha.
He, however did not say if the government was ready for a debate on the recommendations in Parliament. During a meeting of minority MPs from all parties, "I did not say that the Sachar Committee report will be discussed in Parliament during the current session," Antulay said.
The minister said the meeting, which was attended by some 50 MPs, was not called to discuss the Sachar Committee report. "I invited MPs from all parties as there is no standing or consultative committee of his ministry."
On the question of providing reservation to Dalit Muslims, he said "reservation can be an instrument but is certainly not the goal."
He said he will not promise anything which he may not be able to deliver.
The UPA government, he said, wanted to bring all sections at par and "will do whatever possible for that".
"The government is committed to ensuring welfare of minorities. The prime minister's new 15-point programme for the welfare of minorities is a major step in this direction," Antulay said.
"Further, the report of the working group on 'Empowering the Minorities' for the XIth Plan (2007-2012), set up by the Planning Commission, contains a number of proposals for educational, social and economic development of minorities."