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Delhi HC Issues Notice On Plea Seeking Minority Status to Hindus in 9 States

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The Delhi HC, while hearing the petition of BJP leader and lawyer Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay has sought answers from Central Govt. In which it has been claimed that Hindus are a minority in various states and union territories but they are being denied the rights given to other minority groups. A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Harishankar has summoned the reply by issuing notice to Ministries of Home, Law and Justice and Minority Affairs. In which it has been said that the Center should define the word “minority” and make guidelines for their identification at the state level.

A division bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Harishankar issued notices to the respondents in the matter and slated it for detailed hearing on May 4. The petition, filed by petitioner advocate Ashwini Upadhyay, sought minority status for Hindus in nine states-Ladakh, Mizoram, Lakshadweep, Kashmir, Nagaland, Meghalaya, Punjab, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh.

 

The petition said that Hindus are a minority in these nine states but they cannot establish educational institutions of their choice in the spirit of Article 30 (1). “Muslims are a majority in Lakshadweep, Kashmir and Ladakh and there is a significant population in Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Goa and Haryana. But they are treated as a minority under Articles 29-30,” the petition said. The plea said that Christians are a majority in Mizoram, Nagaland, Meghalaya and there is a significant population in Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Andaman, Kerala, Sikkim and Puducherry, but they are treated as a minority under Articles 29 and 30.

“Similarly, Sikhs are majority in Punjab and they have significant numbers in Delhi, Chandigarh and Haryana but they are considered to be minorities,” the petition said. Buddhists have a majority population in Ladakh but are considered to be a minority. Upadhyay also argued that the denial of minority rights to the real minorities and arbitrarily giving the benefits of the minority to the “infringes upon fundamental right to prohibition of discrimination on grounds of religion, race, caste, sex or place of birth”.