Jammu and Kashmir Government has made it compulsory for its employees to attend R-Day functions in Kashmir, warning that any employee found violating the directive would face the action.
In a communication to all district/sectoral officers, the District Development Commissioner Budgam has asked them to ensure their presence along with their entire subordinate staff of the Departments concerned at the venue of the R-Day function. The communication refers to a circular (No-03 GAD of 2017 dated January 10) by General Administration Department.
"It is enjoined upon all district/sectoral officers to ensure their presence along with their entire subordinate staff of the department at the venue. There is no holiday on January 26 but the Government employee has to attend the function as part of duty on the Republic
Day," reads a communication from the DC Budgam. "Every employee has to attend the function and no leave shall be entrained on the said date (January 26)."
Similar directions have gone from administrative heads of different districts to subordinate staff, making participation of the staff a must.
The government missive has been issued at a time when government functions and those by mainstream parties have been witnessing thin participation of people, mostly workers, following five month long summer uprising of 2016 in which 96 civilians were killed and over 15000 injured in action by the security forces, post the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Wani on July 8 last year.
The "joint resistance leadership" has in its protest calendar issued from January 15 to 31 has asked people to observe January 26 as "Black Day" with complete civil curfew.
District Development Commissioner Srinagar Farooq Ahmad Lone said attending the R-Day function was part of duty for employee. "There is nothing new in it," he said.
Another District Development Commissioner from south Kashmir said they had directions from the Government to ensure maximum participation of employees in the function.
"That prompted the directions to the lower staff," said the DC, wishing not to be named.
The communication from DCs talks about "disciplinary action" against employees who fail to turn up for the function.
"A disciplinary action shall be initiated against any erring official/officer. Every district/sectoral officer shall handover the attendance sheet of his entire subordinate staff to chief planning officer," reads the communication.
In Kashmir the main venue for the function would be Bakshi Stadium which remains under complete vigil of the security forces for days prior to the event.
Officials have been asked that "failure to attend the function will be construed as dereliction of duty and disobedience of government instructions".
"The instructions have to be complied with in letter and spirit," said an official.
The main function of the State would be held in MA Stadium Jammu and in this connection all the administrative heads and official/officers of Public Sector Undertakings stationed at Jammu have been asked to ensure their attendance at the function.
"Despite clear instruction from the GAD many of the officials/officers of the government and PSUs have been missing the function which has been viewed seriously by the Government," reads the GAD circular.