NEW - Vedic/Hindu Calendar for 2013

NEW - Vedic/Hindu Calendar for 2013
Shri Ramapir Mandir/Temple in Islamic Republic of Pakistan

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Pakistan Ministry of Minority Affairs plays cruel prank on minorities

KARACHI: The Ministry of Minority Affairs had just yesterday supposedly ended the misery of many people belonging to the minorities by giving each of them cheques that were said to be worth Rs 5,000. Kaishi was one of the people who was ecstatic over receiving the cheque and had just started dreaming about the ways she will use the amount to fix her life.

Her dreams and her happiness, however, were short lived, as when she got to the bank in her neighbourhood, Chanisar Goth, to cash the cheque, she received the shock of a lifetime. The bank manager told her that the cheque was not for Rs 5,000 but in fact for a mere Rs 1,000 and also that she will not be able to cash the cheque here as it belongs to the National Bank of Hyderabad.

Kaishi was dumbfounded and at the same time outraged. She reached her house, only to find out that she was not alone and the ministry had fooled all the other cheque receivers as well, most of whom were widows.
These women had walked to the minister of minority affairs’ office almost every day for a year so that they may get some sort of financial assistance from the ministry and every time they were sent home empty handed with a lot of promises.

Ironically, just yesterday a large crowd, which included people from different communities, had gathered at Sindh Minister for Minority Affairs Dr Mohan Lal’s office to receive the cheques while chanting slogans in his favour. Addressing the distribution ceremony, Lal had said that his ministry is trying to help the religious minorities and these cheques are a part of the first phase of offering relief while similar projects are in the pipeline.

The Department of Minority Affairs was allotted a heavy amount of Rs 100 million in the last budget for different development projects for minority communities including Christians, Hindus and Sikhs living in the province and later the minister decided that 25 percent of these funds would be distributed among the poor widows and needy persons. Just last week, Lal distributed 2,500 cheques each worth Rs 5,000 and on Friday again Lal, who is also the Provincial Welfare Committee for Minorities chairman, distributed cheques among 200 poor people belonging to minorities.

The minister also sent a press release confirming that each cheque is worth Rs 5,000. “He clearly told us that the cheques are worth Rs 5,000 each but we were actually given cheques worth Rs 1,000 only and those can also just be cashed at the bank in Hyderabad,” said Kaishi.

The distraught widows of Chanisar Goth immediately rushed to the Karachi Press Club to protest against Lal, after realising that they would not even be able to cash the meager amount. “We need almost Rs 1,000 just to get to Hyderabad to cash the cheque besides we were told that these cheques were worth Rs 5,000,” said Gomi, another widow from Jogi Moar Colony.

On contact, Lal’s casual reply was that his department issued cheques worth Rs 1,000 while adding that these women will be compensated during the next phase. “Actually we had already distributed a huge amount and there were not enough funds to issue cheques worth Rs 5,000 to these women,” he added.

“We had pinned all our hopes on these cheques and in anticipation we had borrowed money from our relatives to get by and were certain that we would be able to return the money when the cheques came but now we are left with no other option then to go to the ministry on Monday to return the cheques. If we are not given the promised cheques of Rs 5,000, we will sit outside the Karachi Press Club for an indefinite period to protest against Lal,” said Dewari, another protester.
Source: Daily Times

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