LG’s Shivratri gift to PM Package, other minority employees

Directs release of salaries for intervening period to those who resumed duties in Kashmir
J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha during a press conference. [Image for representational purpose only]
J&K Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha during a press conference. [Image for representational purpose only] File: Mir Imran for Greater Kashmir

Jammu: Keeping his word, Lieutenant Governor (LG) Manoj Sinha Sunday directed to release the salary of those PM Package and other minority employees, who resumed their duties in Kashmir division "for the intervening period, without any gap".

The salary for the intervening period (when the employees had not resumed their duties) would be released by adjusting this period, as a special measure in the wake of the ensuing festival of Maha Shivratri.

The direction ahead of Maha Shivratri - the main festival of Kashmiri Pandit community, has come as a major relief for all the employees, particularly PM Package employees.

“All the concerned Heads of the Departments have been directed to release the salary of those PM Package and other minority employees, who have resumed their duties in Kashmir division, for the intervening period, without any gap, as a special measure by adjusting this period, in view of forthcoming Maha Shivratri festival,” official sources said.

They stated that the direction in this connection was issued by the LG’s Secretariat.

The other minority employees also include reserved category (Jammu-based employees) serving in Kashmir.

“Another significant aspect on this account is that all the employees, who have resumed their duties in Kashmir, have already been deployed and accommodated in safer locations in the Valley,” official sources said.

 “With this direction, LG Sinha, living up to his reputation as a man of his word, has walked his talk. Though on all occasions, he has expressed his resolve and commitment to resolve employees’ problems, with an honest and sincere approach. However, on this account (release of salaries), during his recent visit to Jagti migrant Colony, the Lieutenant Governor announced that the direction was issued to release the pending salaries of those PM package employees, who had resumed their duties (in Kashmir) without delay. Today he has gone a step ahead with this direction as a special measure by directing release of salaries even “for the intervening period, without any gap” for all employees, PM package and other minority employees, who have resumed their duties in the Valley,” they said.

On February 4, LG Sinha, during his visit to Jagti Colony for inaugurating 12-day Special Governance Camp for Kashmiri migrants, had said that his administration was sensitive to the issues of Kashmiri migrant families and PM Package employees.

 “Few unfortunate incidents had occurred. These attacks were not only on individuals but also on the integrity of India. There are a handful of people, who on the behest of the neighbouring country are targeting innocent civilians. Under the guidance of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, we are working with full sensitivity and commitment to address all the issues,” he had said, in a reference to a few selective killings of Kashmiri Pandit migrants, including PM package employees and those of reserved category Jammu based employees serving in Kashmir.

“Many PM Package employees have resumed their duties and the direction has been issued to release their pending salaries without delay. We are creating an environment to address the issues of the community. Efforts are being made for welfare of KP migrants’ children and families to ensure that the entire community can contribute to the progress of J&K like it did in the past,” LG Sinha had said.

He had also said that 80 percent to 85 percent PM Package employees were posted at district headquarters.

“Some are posted at tehsil headquarters after the security audit of the areas. We have ensured that no one is posted at any office or school situated in a remote isolated area,” he had said.

Prior to it on January 20, the LG had reiterated that the J&K government was working with a very sensitive approach towards the resolution of problems being confronted by the Kashmiri migrants, particularly employees.

After laying the foundation stone of a mega housing project for Kashmiri migrant employees in the Valley, he had said, “We all are trying to address all genuine concerns of Kashmiri migrants, particularly employees and even Jammu based (reserved category) employees. The administration has persistently been in touch with them. We have redressed all their genuine grievances.”

Notably, PM package employees and reserved category (Jammu based) employees serving in Kashmir, flagging their security concern after a spate of targetted killings in the Valley and the threat of terrorists,  had been agitating in Jammu for almost past one year seeking their relocation to Jammu till the situation improved there (Kashmir).

While many employees (both PM package and reserved category) resumed their duties in Kashmir after assurance of foolproof security by the administration, others were still agitating in Jammu.  

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