The Hindu 4/9/05
Do not criticise elected government, minorities told
It will be preposterous to question the sincerity of the Government: NCM chief
JAIPUR: The Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities, Tarlochan Singh, on Saturday called upon the minority communities to discard the habit of criticising democratically elected governments with constant complaints of "perceived discrimination.'' He said the fear psychosis created among the minorities would harm them in the long run.
Mr. Singh was interacting with reporters during his visit to attend a function of the Sikh Sangat here. He said minorities had no right to denounce the elected governments as the latter had the people's mandate in their favour. "Holding the Government or the ruling party responsible for communalism in the society is improper,'' he said.
Mr. Singh — who is also a Rajya Sabha MP — pointed out that an elected government was answerable to the people at large irrespective of who voted for it and a Chief Minister was duty-bound to fulfil the aspirations of the entire population of the State. It would be preposterous to question the sincerity of the Government, he said.
The Minorities Commission chief said he had led a delegation of Muslims that met the Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, in the aftermath of violence in 2002, when Muslims had announced boycott of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Government. The grievances of the community were settled in a "congenial atmosphere'' with his intervention.
On the observations of the Prime Minister's high-level committee that visited Rajasthan recently to study the socio-economic and educational status of Muslims, Mr. Singh said he did not find any atmosphere of fear, distrust or terror among Muslims in the State.