The Minister of Minority Affairs, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, provided details about the free coaching given to minority students in the parliament on February 8, 2021. He provided information on the specified issue in the form of answers to a series of questions in the Rajya Sabha. The concerned ministry has implemented the Free Coaching and Allied Scheme (Naya Savera). Under this scheme, the government provides free coaching to students or candidates belonging to the six minority communities in the country. A total of 1,29,23,415 scholarships were provided and 24,977 students benefitted in the current year and last two years.
The Naya Savera scheme is applicable to six minority communities in the country. These include Sikhs, Christians, Buddhists, Parsis, Jains and Muslims. However, to be eligible for the scheme, the total family income of such students from all sources must not exceed Rs. 6 lakh per annum. Certain criteria have also been specified for the Project Implementing Agencies (PIAs) under this scheme.
The institute providing free assistance must be registered or run by a registered organisation under the Societies Registration Act, 1860, Companies Act, 2014 or any equivalent, relevant act formed by the respective state or Union Territory (UT). The institute must have also been registered for a minimum of three years to apply for empanelment. It must have been functional or working for at least a period of three years. There are other criteria to meet as well such as the institute having required number of quality faculty members, having the necessary infrastructure, the minimum success rate of 15%, etc.
The implementing agency must have been registered on NITI Aayog as well. In case of declared bankruptcy or supposed blacklisting, the centre or coaching institute shall no longer be eligible to apply for this scheme. The ministry stated that as on date, 44 PIAs have been permitted to provide free coaching with 15 of them located in Uttar Pradesh.
In the span of the last two years, 1,29, 23,415 scholarships were given out under the Naya Savera scheme. A total of 24,977 students or aspirants have benefitted from this scheme in the last two years as well as the current year. The minister also provided state-wise information of students belonging to the minority community who have benefitted under the Scholarship schemes. Moreover, information about those benefitting from the Free Coaching and Allied Scheme is also mentioned in the annexures issued by the ministry. The ministry also clarified that no state-wise fund has been allocated under the two schemes part of Naya Savera. However, Rs.6,599.97 crore has been used to fund this scheme in the last three years.