Chief Minister Sindh Qaim Ali Shah. — File Photo

KARACHI: A high-level meeting jointly chaired by Sindh Chief Minister Syed Qaim Ali Shah and MNA Faryal Talpur on Wednesday decided to introduce new laws to protect minorities' rights, particularly legislation against forced conversion of Hindu girls.

The meeting, held at the Chief Minister's House here, discussed in detail the problems faced by the Hindu community and measures to resolve them.

The chief minister announced Rs 50 million for the welfare of people from the Hindu community, their places of worship and for development schemes in Jacobabad.

The meeting also decided to ensure strict implementation of five per cent quota for minorities in government jobs to remove the sense of deprivation prevailing in the Hindu community.

Federal minister Maula Bakhsh Chandio, MNA Ijaz Jakhrani, provincial ministers Mukesh Kumar Chawla, Diya Ram, Mohan Lal Kohistani, MPA Hargos Das, Hira Ram of Hindu Panchayat, Khatu Mal Jiwani, IG Police Sindh Fayaz Legari, Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Sindh Muhammad Siddique Memon, among others, attended the meeting.

Qaim Ali Shah assured the Hindu community that they would be provided with complete protection. He said the PPP believed in serving the masses without any discrimination and gave equal treatment to every citizen, as the country's Constitution provided equal rights to minorities.

The chief minister directed the IG to ensure timely cooperation to the Hindu community on any complaints of kidnapping, robberies and forced conversions. He also asked the IG to ensure implementation of job quota allocated for minorities in the police department.

Regarding the incidents of forced conversions of Hindu girls for marriage, MNA Faryal Talpur said the matter was being given religious colour when it was a social issue.

Federal minister Chandio asked the elected representatives to resolve the problems of the Hindu community in their respective constituencies.

The minister said that on the directives of President Asif Ali Zardari, he had held meetings with the representatives from the Hindu community in various parts of Sindh.

He said that the representatives apprised him of the problems faced by them, but they did not want to leave their homeland under any circumstances.

Chandio said reports of Hindu families' migration were contrary to the facts and that only 20 Hindu pilgrims had gone to India.

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