Sunday, February 22, 2009

Secularism does not lie in sops to Muslims: Dr. JP

Secularism does not mean doling out of subsidies and making reservations to minorities in elections or educational institutions or jobs, Lok Satta President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan said here today.

Addressing some 500 Muslims, who had come in a procession from Jubilee Hills to the party headquarters and joined the party, Dr. JP said secularism meant providing equal opportunities for all irrespective of their religion or caste.

Pointing out that 80 percent of patients who throng Government hospitals in places like Hyderabad happen to be Muslims, Dr. JP said that attempts should be made to guarantee them quality health care and education, job-oriented skills and livelihood security. Dr. JP said he was happy that a large number of Muslims had chosen to join the Lok Satta Party in the belief that there could be no improvement in their lives until there was total political transformation.

Mr. Mohammed Ishaq Khan, who led the rally of Muslims, said it was their conviction that Lok Satta policies would contribute to Muslims’ development that made them take active membership in the party. Among those who took part in the meeting were Mr. Mohd. Abdul Khadir, Mr. Mohd. Mujibuddin Shakir, Lok Satta Party Secretary Vijayender Reddy, Lok Satta candidates Mrs. Pratibha Rao and Mrs. Subhashini contesting from the Jubilee Hills and Khairatabad constituencies respectively to the Assembly.

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