An activist had moved court saying that the state was hosting 'elite' parties, with funds meant for minority welfare.

Will ensure that iftar parties benefit poor Muslims in mosques Telangana tells Hyd HCImage: Wikimedia Commons/Cephas405
news News Saturday, June 17, 2017 - 08:28

Responding to allegations that funds of the Minority Welfare Department (MWD) were being used for lavish iftar parties for elite Muslims instead of the poor, the state told the Hyderabad High Court that it was not the case.

The state said that it would ensure that the poorest of the poor Muslims benefit from the iftar parties hosted in 800 mosques across the state.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by social activist Lubna Sarwath, who questioned the state's move, and termed the grand annual iftar party hosted by Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, as 'unconstitutional'.

Alleging that the funds were neither being used for the 'minorities' or their 'wefare', the petitioner's counsel contended that the state was wasting several crore rupees on the upcoming party on June 18.

"A grandiose dinner in the name of 'iftaar party' is thrown by the Telangana government for VVIPs, since the past 3 years, and thus funds meant for 'minority welfare' is neither going to minorities nor to welfare. The Chief justice and Chief Minister were aso partaking from this lavish menu hosted from 'minority welfare' funds," Lubna alleged.

The Deccan Chronicle reported that the state's counsel claimed that they would only be extending benefits to orphans, destitute, widows and poor Muslims, and also claimed that the state had not been using the funds of the minority welfare department for annual the iftar party.

“We will insist that the district collector and the relevant mosque committee screen the beneficiaries by putting a condition that only those with white ration cards and very poor must be given priority," the Times of India quoted the state counsel as saying.

The TOI report also quoted the court saying, “You have to furnish us a list of beneficiaries, category wise, after Ramzan indicating how many destitutes, orphans, poor widows, etc., got the benefit through your parties and gifts."

However, the HC bench refused to stay the iftar dinner being hosted on June 18, and said that the state government could go on with its plans. 
 
The court gave three weeks to the state government, to file its report.

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