//Minority report paints grim picture

Minority report paints grim picture

The Telegraph India , 1 Dec 2006

New Delhi, Nov. 30: The government, the biggest employer in the organised sector, is not hiring more than a minuscule of Muslims.

From the select group of IAS officers to Indian Railways that employs several lakhs, Muslim representation falls well below their proportion in the country’s population.

The Sachar Committee was sent in data relating to 88 lakh employees by different government departments, agencies and institutions. Of them, 4.4 lakh — or a mere five per cent — are Muslim.

In addition, information on 14 million public sector undertakings showed Muslims made up only 3.3 per cent of central PSUs. Out of the state PSUs that responded, Muslims accounted for only 10.8 per cent. Muslims form 13.4 per cent of the country’s population.

The 2006 civil lists of key central services — the Indian Administrative Service, the Indian Foreign Service and the Indian Police Service — threw up grim numbers. Only 3 per cent of IAS, 1.8 per cent of IFS and 4 per cent of IPS officials are Muslim.

In fact, only 4.9 per cent of candidates who appeared for the Civil Services written exam in 2003 and 2004 were Muslim. But the committee found it “reassuring” that their success rate was about the same as others.

The report doesn’t mention the Muslim presence in the defence services — they were reluctant to send the data — but the community’s share in the national security agencies falls well below their proportion in the country’s population.

At the higher levels of the paramilitary forces, Muslims make up a mere 3.6 per cent of the total, and 4.6 per cent in the lower categories. As many as 96 per cent of Muslims in these agencies fall in the lower categories.

The picture in government departments in the states is just as dismal. “In no state does the representation of Muslims match their population share,” the report said.

Most states did not even send any data to the committee — only 12 responded, mostly with incomplete details.

Bengal figures

In Bengal, where over 25 per cent of the population is Muslim, the community had only 4.7 per cent of employees at “higher positions” like Groups A and B. Only 1.8 per cent are Muslim in the lower categories.

Andhra Pradesh is the only state where the representation of Muslims is fairly close to, but still less than, the population percentage. In three other states — Gujarat, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu — the Muslim share in government jobs is more than half of their population percentage.

The committee found the proportion of Muslims in the judiciary “a major point of concern”. Analysing data from 15 states, it found Muslims made up 7.8 per cent of the judiciary, OBCs constituted 23 per cent and scheduled castes and tribes 20 per cent.