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SC seeks Centre’s reply on status of non-Muslims in J&K

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New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday gave the Centre three months’ time to take a decision on a plea to grant minority status to non-Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir.

A bench of Chief Justice J.S. Khehar, Justice A.K. Goel and Justice D.Y. Chandrachud gave the Centre last chance to take a call, as it noted the government submission that it needed eight weeks to hold consultations with the state government and other stakeholders, if any.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by advocate Ankur Sharma that said the state’s majority population — Muslims — should not be allowed to reap benefits of central schemes for the welfare of minorities.

Sharma had told the court that Muslims constitute 68 per cent of the state’s population and thus they were not a “minority” in the state.

The petitioner had said that the benefits offered under the Prime Minister’s 15-point guidelines for the welfare of minorities should also not go to the majority segment of the state population.

Sharma had told the court that there was no State Minority Commission in Jammu and Kashmir.

Earlier, the apex court had issued notice to the Centre, Jammu and Kashmir and the National Minorities Commission, seeking their response and refusing to pass any interim order to block the benefits of the central schemes from being availed by the majority population in the northern state.

IANS

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