New Delhi: At least five candidates who were supported by the Ministry of Minority Affairs with scholarships have succeeded in clearing the civil services exams this year, Union minister Najma Heptulla said on Thursday.
"At least five candidates supported by our ministry have made it to the civil services. We provided scholarship to these students to fund their tutorial expenses," Heptulla told IANS.
Of the five students, three are Muslims, one is a Sikh and one is a Buddhist, the minister informed.
"This is a true example of our prime minister's motto of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas'," she said.
According to the ministry, the students who qualified are Gurleen Kaur (Sikh - UPSC rank 146); Shakil Ahmad Ganie (Muslim - rank 273); Shaikh Ansar Ahamad (Muslim - rank 361); Yangchen Bhutia (Buddhist - rank 956) and Safdar Ali (Muslim - rank 980).
"These students were provided scholarships to avail coaching facilities at the institutes of their choice under the `Nai Udaan` scheme," Heptulla said.
The criteria for a student from any minority community to avail the scholarships are marks and family income.
"Although there is an elaborate procedure for selection of students for the scholarships, we generally give priority to students who are from below poverty line or economically weaker families. Their academic performance is also a basic criterion," she explained.