Modi govt funds for churches, convents, tombs and temples

churchNEW DELHI: With the Narendra Modi government facing flak over repeated attacks on churches, finance minister Arun Jaitley in the Union Budget listed development and restoration of churches and convents in Goa as one of the top priorities.

To woo the minorities, the government also unveiled the scheme — “Nai Manzil” — to enable youth from minority community to go for skill development.

Reaching out to the SCs, STs and backward classes, who run small business units, the government has decided to set up “Mudra (Micro Units Development Refinance Agency) Bank” to finance them.

The government has proposed resources for the landscape restoration, signage, interpretation centres, parking, access to the differently-abled and other facilities at churches and convents of old Goa.

It will also allocate fund for the Qutub Shahi Tombs in Hyderabad, Leh Palace in Ladakh, Hampi in Karnataka, Kumbalgarh and other hill forts of Rajasthan, Rani ki Vav in Patan, Varanasi temple town, Jalianwala Bagh in Amritsar and Elephanta caves in Mumbai.

To woo the the minority community youth, the government has decided to launch “Nai Manzil”, an integrated education and livelihood scheme for minority community youth who have formal school leaving certificate.

For showcasing civilisation and culture of the Parsi community, the government has decided to support an exhibition — The Everlasting Flame.

The government has also decided to create a refinance agency, “Mudra Bank” with an initial corpus of Rs 20,000 crores to provide credit facilities to SC/ST businesses.

Said Jaitley: “The Mudra Bank will refinance institution through a Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana. The lending priority will be given to SC/ST enterprises.”

He said development has to generate inclusive growth, and while large corporate and business entities have a role to play, it has to be complemented by informal sector — enterprises that generate maximum employment.

There are 5.77 crore small business units that are mostly individual proprietorships, running small manufacturing and training business, he said. – From Asian Age

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