NEW DELHI: Refusing to entertain a plea seeking minority status for Hindus in eight Indian states, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked the petitioner – BJP leader and advocate Ashwani Kumar Upadhyay – to approach National Commission for Minorities.
The Public Interest Litigation or PIL sought legitimate benefits for Hindus in Lakshadweep, Mizoram, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Jammu and Kashmir, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Punjab.
“According to 2011 Census, Hindus are minority in eight states i.e. Lakshadweep (2.5%), Mizoram (2.75%), Nagaland (8.75%), Meghalaya (11.53%), J&K (28.44%), Arunachal Pradesh (29%), Manipur (31.39%) and Punjab (38.40%)," states the PIL.
The further added that minority rights of Hindus in these states are being "siphoned off illegally and arbitrarily to the majority population because neither Central nor the state governments have notified Hindus as a ‘minority’ under Section 2(c) of National Commission for Minority Act. Therefore, Hindus are being deprived of their basic rights, guaranteed under Articles 25 to 30.”
Comparing the situation with other minority communities, the plea said, “Christians are majority in Mizoram, Meghalaya and Nagaland and there is significant population in Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Kerala, Manipur, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, but they are treated as minority. Likewise, Sikhs are majority in Punjab and there is significant population in Delhi, Chandigarh and Haryana but they are also treated as minority,” he said.