AC approves adoption of revised Compassionate Appointment Rules (SRO-43)

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Srinagar: The Administrative Council (AC) which met here under the chairmanship of Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha Monday approved the adoption of the Jammu and Kashmir Rehabilitation Assistance Scheme, 2022.

An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that the decision was aimed at promoting equity, inclusion, and accountability in providing compassionate appointments by introducing a criteria-based assessment for establishing compassion in the bereaved family based on best practices evolved out of experiential learning over the years.

The new scheme would grant appointment or monetary compensation on compassionate grounds to a dependent family member of a government employee, who may die in harness or as a result of terror-related action or due to enemy action on the Line of Control or International Border within Jammu and Kashmir and is not involved in terror-related activities or retires on invalid pension, thereby, leaving his family in penury and without any means of livelihood.

The scheme would extend relief to the family of the government employee and save them from financial destitution.

To bring greater transparency and equity, besides ensuring adequate safeguards against the misuse of the rehabilitation assistance framework, the new scheme has incorporated provisions for receiving online applications in a centralised manner in the General Administration Department (GAD) on a designated portal, constituting a screening committee in GAD to make appraisal and recommendations, making the Administrative Secretary in the GAD the only competent authority for approving the case of compassionate appointment and monetary compensations (in cases where relaxations are not required, proposing a 5 percent cap for cases to be considered in relaxation of rules, making relaxation criteria more transparent and objective, and keeping applicants eligible for consideration upto 5 years from the date of submission of applications.

Further, under the new scheme, the number of vacancies and the merit list of the eligible candidates would be prepared annually and eligible candidates would be considered purely based on merit obtained about a point-based merit system quarterly.

Both the list of vacancies and the merit list of candidates would be put out in the public domain to make the process fully transparent and accountable.

The appointment on compassionate grounds would be made for the multi-tasking staff or equivalent or lowest non-gazetted cadre posts in the department.

However, if an applicant is a graduate or has a higher qualification, there are provisions to allow discretion for considering appointments in the non-gazetted cadre.

However, the compassionate appointment cases still pending disposal in the GAD under the existing SRO 43 for various reasons including relaxation of rules and identification of posts in other departments would be dealt with by following SRO 43 of 1994 as amended from time to time.

Furthermore, the new scheme also provides for extending support to the dependants under various self-employment and government-sponsored employment generating schemes for obtaining credit as per the laid down norms for setting up a manufacturing unit or a trading venture.

The new scheme would put an end to the uncertainty that plagued the erstwhile Compassionate Appointment Rules due to which cases lingered on for years together.

The new scheme is expected to provide immediate succour to NOKs of employees who die in harness.

Advisor to Lieutenant Governor Rajeev Rai Bhatnagar, Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta, and Principal Secretary to Lieutenant Governor Nitishwar Kumar attended the meeting.

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