Non-Muslim minorities seek rights Non-Muslim minorities seek rights - Patna - City - The Times of India PATNA: Non-Muslim minorities aired their grievances at a meeting convened by the Bihar State Minority Commission. Minority Welfare minister Shahid Ali Khan assured the gathering that the non-Muslim minorities in the state will get an opportunity to meet chief minister Nitish Kumar and place their demands before him. He said that the NDA government was sensitive to the demands of every section of the society and will strive to meet the genuine demands made by them. "For the first time in Bihar, a separate meeting is being held for non-Muslim minorities," pointed out commission vice-chairman Dr Dilip Kumar Sinha. The meeting was attended by representatives of the Sikh, Christian, Buddhists, Jain and Bengalis (linguistic minority) residing in Bihar. It was chaired by Sinha. The Sikh representatives demanded appointment of teachers to teach Gurumukhi at Gurdwaras. They also demanded compensation for 35 Sikh families which were hit by the 1984 anti-Sikh riot in the state and reservation for Sikh students in technical institutions. They also demanded interest-free loans for Sikh youths to start business and self-employment schemes. The Christian representatives demanded a permanent representation in the commission instead of the present rotational system of selecting members from the Sikh and Christian community. They also demanded a nominated member in both the Houses of the state legislature and removal of hindrance in getting caste certificates. They also demanded construction of boundary walls for Christian graveyards, besides rebate in fees for children belonging to Christian community in missionary schools and access to government schemes like mid-day meal, free uniforms and cycles. The Buddhist representative demanded amendment in Bodh Gaya Temple Act, 1949, to enable Buddhists to take control of the shrine. They also demanded that Buddha Purnima be declared a state holiday and the benefits earmarked for members of minority community be given to the Buddhists. The Jain representatives demanded notification declaring Jains as a minority as done in 10 states of the country. The Bengalis demanded appointment of teachers of Bangala language in government schools where there are more than 40 Bangala students. They also demanded Raiyati rights over land where East Bengal refugees were settled in the state, besides shifting of Bihar Bangala Academy from the state human resource department to the minority welfare department.