The Jain community has been accorded a minority status by the government which will get them benefits in government schemes and programmes. The decision affecting about 50 lakh Jains was taken at a Union Cabinet meeting.
The Jains are now the 6th minority community in India after Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis. The Jains would get a share in central funds meant for welfare programmes and scholarships. They will also be able to manage and administer their own educational institutions. The government would soon issue a notification on the matter.
The community already enjoys a minority status in UP, MP, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan but the new decision applies to the entire country. Numerically, the Jain community is about 50 lakh-strong but they are prosperous, mostly engaged in business.