About 20 %, or 200 million, are religious minorities. Muslims constitutes 138 million or 13.4 5, Christians 24 million or 2.3 %, Sikhs 19 million or 2 %, Buddhists 8 million or 0.8 % and Jains 4 million or 0.4 %. “Others” numbered 6.6 million or 0.6 %. According to Mr. Tahir Mahmood, an Indian Muslim journalist, “The 2.3 % Christians in the Indian population cater to 20 % of all primary education in India, 10 % of all the literacy and community health care, 25 % of all existing care of destitute and orphans, 30 % of all the handicapped, lepers and AIDS patients etc”.
Discrimination against Minority Muslims
Recently, Justice Rajinder Sachar Committee report admitted that 138 Million Muslims across India are severely under-represented in government employment, including Public Sector Units. Ironically, West Bengal, a communist ruled state reported 0 (zero) percent of Muslims in higher positions in its PSUs! It has found that the share of Muslims in government jobs and in the lower judiciary in any state simply does not come anywhere close to their population share. The only place where Muslims can claim a share in proportion to their population is in prison! (Muslims convicts in India is 19.1%, while the number of under trials is 22.5%, which exceed their population ratio) . A note sent on January 9 by the army to the defence ministry in 2004 says that only 29,093 Muslims among a total of 1.1 million personnel — a ratio of 2.6 %, which compares poorly with the Muslims’ 13.8 % share in the Indian population. Officially, Indian Army don’t allow head count based on religion.
A Muslim child attends school for three years and four months, compared to the national average of four years. Less than two percent of the students at the elite Indian Institutes of Technology comprise of the Muslim community. According to the National Knowledge Commission member Jayathi Ghosh, ‘there is a need to re-orient official strategies for ensuring better access of Muslim children to schooling outside the madrasas which cater to only four per cent of children from the community.’
Muslim-majority Indian Kashmir has been in the grip of an insurgency against New Delhi’s rule since 1989, leaving more than 47,000 people dead by official count.
Discrimination against Sikhs
Of the 2,733 officially admitted murders of sikh minority in 1984, only nine cases have so far led to the conviction of 20 people in 25 years; a conviction rate of less than 1%. [ENSAF]