An embarrassing protest by an individual at the inaugural of the National Waqf Development Corporation by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh created a flutter, more so as the man had to be forcibly escorted out of the venue for saying that the UPA government’s scheme for the minorities never reached the beneficiaries.
Just as the PM concluded his speech which talked about the “unwavering commitment” of his government “for the promotion and protection of the interests of the minorities” on Wednesday, a man—later identified as M Faheem Baig—stood up to shout that the minority welfare schemes were not reaching the people.
As the PM and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi, who was also present at the function, looked on, the agitated man shouted that he has “written 150 letters to the PM, but my voice has not been heard—I did not receive acknowledgment of a single letter”. Continuing his tirade, till he was evicted from the scene, he said: “There is no need for a new scheme when the government cannot ensure implementation of existing welfare programmes.”
The National Waqf Development Corporation has been newly set up on the recommendations of the Sachar Committee to bring out transparency in the management of 4.9 lakh registered Waqf properties in the country, the highest in the world, with an estimated worth of `1.20 lakh crore.
The current annual income from these Waqf properties is `163 crore, and it will be commercially used to generate more revenue to benefit Muslims.