Many steps taken for development of minorities: Naqvi

New Delhi, Oct 5 (IANS) The Narendra Modi government has take a slew of measures, including the USTTAD scheme for the welfare of minorities, Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said on Monday.

“The government has taken several steps for overall development of underprivileged, poor sections, including minorities,” he said at a book launch function here.

Naqvi said that the USTTAD scheme, which aims at capacity building and updating the traditional skills of master craftsmen and artisans, was one of the important initiatives taken for welfare of the minorities, especially the Muslim community.

The scheme would be helpful in providing a platform to publicize and showcase traditional skills, arts and crafts of minority communities, he said.

“This initiative will provide a broad market for arts and crafts of minorities,” the minister said.

Speaking on the occasion, Minority Affairs Minister Najma Heptulla said her ministry would take help from expert knowledge partners like National Institute of Fashion Technology, National Institute of Design, Indian Institute of Crafts and Design, ACCESS Development Services, Export Promotion Councils in order make its scheme a success.

Earlier, book “India’s Creative Continuum – Minority Communities in Craft” was released by Minister of State in the PMO Jitendra Singh.

Reiterating the government’s commitment to empower minorities, Singh said the focus of the central government is to create employability and employment simultaneously.

“The documentation of traditional arts/crafts of minorities and promoting the masters of the crafts will help in preserving, protecting and promoting,” he said.

In the ongoing exhibition-cum-sale of traditional crafts and skills, there was a display of 18 traditional skills from various states including Punjab, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

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