NEW DELHI: The Jews of India, one of the most the minuscule communities in the country, will get minority status soon, thanks to the overzealous Prime Minister’s Office.
Barely two weeks after the Ministry of Minority Affairs asked the Ministry of Law & Justice to verify the legalities of the proposal to give minority status to Jews, the PMO has asked the law ministry to speed up the verification process.
“We are giving the matter top priority as we have got instructions to do so,” an official told Express, adding that the law ministry would send its report in a month’s time. When the Jain community was accorded minority status, it had taken nearly four years for the decision to get the final stamp of approval.
“The Jain community’s proposal was mooted around 2011 and it got approval in 2014,” he said.
This unusual speed with which Jews will be accorded minority status is being attributed to the proposed visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Israel, expected around June.
Set to be the first Indian PM to visit the West Asian country, Modi seems quite determined to make it a memorable one. “Though we have not received any specific communication with regard to his visit, the unusual interest in giving minority status to Jews is being attributed to this,” said an official with the National Minority Commission. The Prime Minister is expected to make the announcement regarding the minority status at the time of the visit.
According to the official, the commission had received queries from the PMO regarding the Jewish community towards the end of last year.
“We had gathered all the information and had handed it over to them in January itself,” said the official.
According to him, the PMO had also asked details about the Jews who had migrated to Israel in the 1950s. He said that around 50,000 Indian Jews are settled in that country.