Minority Development Board (MDB)was constituted in Mariani on July 25 in a conference organised by the Minority Welfare and Development Board, Titabor Sub-Division at Nakachari, Jorhat district. The conference was attended by the communities from the Christian, Muslim, Sikh and Buddhist
The meet was chaired by Nurul Hussain, president of the Minority Welfare and Development Board. The function was held with Er. Temsu Wathi Ao, District Informatics Officer (NIC), Mokokchung and Coordinator, Border Peace Coordination Committee (Assam-Nagaland) as resource person and Roupjyoti Kurmi, MLA of Mariani and Putul Boragohain, president, Jorhat Zila Parishad as guests of honour.
Er. Temsu dwelt on the need of strengthening the religious minorities under a stable platform and to harvest the fruit availed by the government to the religious minorities. District Informatics Officer (NIC), Deputy Commissioner’s Office, Mokokchung and Coordinator, BPCC (A-N), Er. Temsu Wathi Ao expressed that in Assam, religious groups belonging to Christian, Muslim, Sikh, Buddhist and Persia were treated as religious minority where the state has the second highest percentage of Muslims in India next to J&K. The state has 82.40 lakh (31%) Muslims and 9.86 lakh Christians (3.7%). Sikhs and Buddhists make up 0.1% and 0.3% of the total population respectively.
The release also stated that the formation of minority board would benefit the minorities as per the Sachar Committee’s report where Prime Minister’s 15 point Programme for welfare of the minorities should be incorporated. These included, upliftment programme for education, health, banking, shelter, safe drinking water and hygiene, development of Art & Cultural needs, grant in aid and financial advance with low rate of interest to entrepreneur etc.
The release added that with the formation of Sub-divisional level Minority Welfare and Development Board, the Christians living in the area too were expected to be benefited in all aspects where the area has a sizeable Naga population of around three thousand which comes under Christian minority at Assam.