Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment
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The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment is an Government of India ministry. It is responsible for welfare, social justice, and empowerment of disadvantaged and marginalised sections of society, including scheduled castes (SC), Other Backward Classes (OBC), the disabled, the elderly, and the victims of drug abuse. The Ministry of Tribal Affairs is responsible for the welfare of scheduled tribes (ST).
The Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment holds cabinet rank as a member of the Council of Ministers. The current minister is Thawar Chand Gehlot, who is assisted by a Minister of State, Sudarshan Bhagat.
In the 1985-1986, the former Ministry of Welfare was divided into the Department of Women and Child Development and the Department of Welfare. At the same time, the Scheduled Castes Development Division, Tribal Development Division and the Minorities and Backward Classes Welfare Division of the Ministry of Home Affairs and the Wakf Division of the Ministry of Law left those ministries to form the new Ministry of Welfare.
The Ministry of Welfare adopted the name Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment in May 1998. In October 1999, the Tribal Development Division left the ministry to become its own ministry, the Ministry of Tribal Affairs. In January 2007, the Minorities Division and the Wakf Unit were moved out of the ministry to form the Ministry of Minority Affairs and the Child Development Division left the ministry to form the Ministry of Women and Child Development. To propagate the ideologies and philosophy of Babu Jagjivan Ram, the 'Babu Jagjivan Ram National Foundation', has been set up by the Ministry.
The ministry has five bureaus, each headed by a Joint Secretary: Scheduled Castes Development Bureau; Backward Classes Bureau Coordination, Media, Administration; Disability Bureau; Social Defense (SD) Bureau; and Project, Research, Evaluation and Monitoring Bureau.
- Statutory Bodies
- National Institutes
- Ali Yavar Jung National Institute for the Hearing Handicapped, Mumbai (AYJNIHH)
- Deendayal Upadhyaya Institute for the Physically Handicapped, New Delhi (formerly Institute for the Physically Handicapped (IPH))
- National Institute for Orthopaedically Handicapped, Kolkata
- National Institute of Mentally Handicapped, Secunderabad (NIMH)
- National Institute of Visually Handicapped (NIVH), Dehradun
- National Institute of Rehabilitation Training and Research, Cuttack (NIRTAR)
- National Institute for Empowerment of Persons with Multiple Disabilities (NIEPMD), Chennai
- Indian Sign Language Research & Training Centre (ISLRTC)
- Public sector undertakings
*Composite Regional Centres for Persons with Disabilities (CRCs)
*Public Private Partnership **Indian Spinal Injury Centre
- Department of Adi Dravidar and Tribal Welfare (Tamil Nadu)
- Department of Backward Classes, Most Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare (Tamil Nadu)
- Department of Social Welfare and Nutritious Meal Programme (Tamil Nadu)
- Reservation in India