It may be noted that with the big elections knocking the door, each party is trying out new way to appease the common mass. Whether it is with their developmental model or by their corruption removal funda, every party has designed their set of strategies to bring out the most number of votes into their bag.
Keeping this flame alive Congress also conducted a new way to increase their vote banks. On January 20, the Union Cabinet agreed to grant the Jain community the status of a 'national minority'. Jains are the followers of an ancient faith that is often confused to be a sect of Hinduism. They lead a life on the path of non –violence towards all living beings. The process of declaring them as minority was firstly pushed by the minority affairs minister K Rahman along with Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi. The Jain Samaj leaders had spoken to Rahul about the long pending demand on the minority status of Jains and had also requested him to look into the matter and support the cause.
A day ago Rahul Gandhi spoke to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh regarding the matter to grant minority status to the Jain community. Soon after the meeting the proposal was passed and Jain community became the sixth religious minority community after Muslim, Christian, Sikhs, Buddhist and Parsis. This minority tag will help the Jain Community to avail benefits in government schemes and various governmental programs under the minority quota.
After the cabinet arrived at the decision, Minority Affairs Minister K Rahman stated that his ministry will issue a notification that will help them to manage and administer their own educational institutions. Under Article 30, the Jains can manage their own educational institute without any interference. Jains are a very small community and have about 50 lakhs of population. They are mostly engaged with business and are very prosperous and cultured people. With this minority status, Jains will promote and protect Jainism as a distinct faith and culture. Under Article 25 and Article 26 any community can propagate their religion and they have the freedom to manage their religious affairs. This brings a self-identity to them. Jains are already enjoying minority status in some states like Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.
Just before lok sabha elections such a decision has uplifted the benefits of Congress party to the next level. It can be said that this will put an extra advantage on their vote banks easily.