ANI Photo | On Ambedkar’s death anniversary, Parliamentary panel on SCs and STs submits report outlining key recommendations

On Mahaparinirvan Diwas, commemorating the death anniversary of BR Ambedkar, the Parliamentary Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes on Wednesday presented a detailed report outlining key recommendations.
The report stems from the committee’s extensive study visit to Havelock Island, Port Blair, Mahabalipuram, and Mumbai from August 24 to August 29, 2023.
The comprehensive report is poised to shape the direction of policies and initiatives aimed at preserving and promoting the ideals of Ambedkar for the welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the country.
During discussions with the chief secretary and senior officials of the Maharashtra government, the committee urged the allocation of Rs 35 crore for the renovation of Siddharth College of Arts, Science, and Commerce in Fort, Mumbai.
An additional Rs25 crore was proposed for the digitalisation of books and documents in the college library, a move to preserve and make accessible the rich academic heritage housed within its walls.
The committee also emphasised the need for expediting the Indu Mill Memorial Project in Dadar, Mumbai. The recommendations included enhancing the auditorium’s seating capacity to 3,500 seats, constructing a separate convention hall with a 5,000-seat capacity, and introducing facilities such as a light and sound show and an animated movie centre showcasing BR Ambedkar’s life history.
The committee also urged the Maharashtra government to engage professionals like Yogesh K Arote and Sanjay Jhadav to assist the current Chief Architect, Shashi Prabhu.
Expressing concern over the lack of progress, the committee urged the initiation of the memorial construction at Ambadave Village, Ratnagiri District, which is Ambedkar’s native place. This location, declared as one of the Holy Panch Teerth by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2017, holds significant historical importance.
The panel recommended the issuance of permanent caste certificates to pre-1960 migrants of Gujarati descent settled in Mumbai.
It also urged the construction of residential accommodation for the Valmiki community/Safai Karamcharis in Maharashtra and proposed scholarships and financial assistance for sending 100 SC/ST students abroad annually for higher education.
Several recommendations focused on improving the representation of SC/ST individuals in selection and promotion committees and boards of directors in public sector banks.
The committee stressed the importance of regular meetings between SC/ST employee welfare associations and management and the need for fair grading in annual performance appraisal reports.
It further underscored the urgency of implementing these recommendations and called for quarterly meetings between SC/ST employee welfare associations and management to ensure timely grievance redressal.
Additionally, it recommended the appointment of liaison officers and chief liaison officers, emphasising the importance of fair treatment in the annual appraisal system

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