The Minorities Commission (MC) was established in 1978 as part of a resolution passed by the Ministry of Home Affairs. The government's resolution justifying the establishment of the Minorities Commission was notified by the Ministry of Home Affairs under Choudhary Charan Singh.
Resolution: Despite safeguards provided in the Constitution and the laws in force, there persists among the minorities a feeling of inequality and discrimination.
The government prioritises the enforcement of minorities' safeguards in the Constitution, federal and state laws, and government policies and administrative schemes to protect secular traditions and promote national integration.
Institutional Arrangements: It is convinced that effective institutional arrangements are urgently needed to ensure the enforcement and implementation of all minorities' safeguards contained in the Constitution, federal and state laws, and government policies and administrative schemes.
As a result, the Indian government has established a minorities commission to safeguard the rights of minorities, whether religious or linguistic.
The Commission was initially composed of a chairperson and two members are drawn from minority communities. After 14 years as a non-statutory body, the Minorities Commission gained statutory status in 1992 with the enactment of the National Commission for Minorities Act.
The National Commission for Minorities (Amendment) Act of 1992, as amended in 1995, defines the Commission's current powers, functions, and position.
What are the structure and functions of NCM?
The National Commission for Minorities (NCM) is made up of a chairperson, a vice-chairperson, and '5' additional members from minority communities who must be people of eminence, ability, and integrity.
Term: Members are elected for three-year terms.
The chairperson of the Commission was also appointed as an ex-officio member of the NHRC to perform the majority of the NHRC's functions.
The Delhi High Court recently ordered the government to fill the chairperson and five other members of the National Commission for Minorities (NCM) by July 31, 2021.
The NGM is responsible for a number of tasks related to the promotion and protection of minority communities' interests across the country.
Evaluation of minorities' development at the national and state levels, as well as the effectiveness of various safeguards provided for minorities in the Constitution and legislation passed by the Union and state governments, are critical functions of the Commission.
Recommending that the federal government or state governments put in place effective safeguards to protect the rights of minorities.
Reviewing the policies of the Union and the States and the attitudes of governments toward minorities.
Examining specific complaints alleging denial of minorities' rights and protections.
Conducting research, studies, and analyses on the issue of preventing minority discrimination.
Proposing legal and social measures to ensure that any minority is protected.
Providing periodic reports to the Central Government on the difficulties that minorities face.
The Commission has been given a number of new powers to help it carry out its duties and responsibilities more effectively. The Commission, whose powers are modelled after those of the Civil Court of law, has the authority to issue summons to anyone in India in order to ensure his appearance before the Commission and oath examination.
In addition, the Commission has the authority to demand the presentation of any record or document that it deems necessary for the performance of its duties.
In 1993, the first Statutory National Commission was established, and five religious minorities were designated as such: Muslims, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists, and Zoroastrians (Parsis). In 2014, Jains were also designated as a minority group.