The Bold Voice of J&K

Delink PM employment package from rehabilitation policy

58

Omkar Dattatray

At the outset it can be said with certainty that the prime ministers return and rehabilitation package of 2008 is faulty from its very conception as it failed to rehabilitate the uprooted and exiled Kashmiri Pandits at the place of their birth. Erroneously the PM employment package for Kashmiri Pandits was unnecessarily linked with the rehabilitation policy and thus the combination of these two separate things created chaos and confusion in the minds of the Kashmiri Pandits and the policy makers. The result is that the rehabilitation plan for the Kashmiri Pandits could not be implemented on the ground and it remained merely a pious declaration of the successive governments. The PM employment package for Kashmiri Migrants is an economic package as its objective is to provide some succor to the unemployed youth of the migrant Community. Since the PM employment also includes Muslim migrants as well and some of the Muslims have fled Kashmir for some time but they continue to live in their homes in Kashmir. There cannot be any rehabilitation for the Muslim migrants because they continue to live and flourish in Kashmir. Thus there is great and urgent need and requirement for delinking the PM employment package from return the return and rehabilitation plan and policy because clubbing these together has created enormous problems for the Kashmiri Pandits in general and package employees in particular. Therefore, it is unnatural and erroneous to link these two things. Thus, clubbing employment package with the return and rehabilitation plan and policy has created more problems for the migrant community and the package employees and so it is better to delink the two things for the good of the uprooted community. The rehabilitation policy is a comprehensive and has got wider scope and connotation while the scope and meaning of the employment package is limited and the objective of the employment package is to provide some means of livelihood and it has nothing to do with the return and rehabilitation policy of the government. These two subjects are two separate things and they cannot and should not be bracketed and linked together except to the detriment of the unemployed youth of the displaced community. So it is in the fitness of things that these two separate things should be urgently delinked for the benefit of the unemployed youth of the uprooted Kashmiri Pandits. Agitating PM package employees are demanding delinking of the employment package from return and rehabilitation policy. There is merit and substance in this demand of the protesting package employees and their demand of delinking PM employment package from return and rehabilitation policy is genuine and the powers sitting in cozy chairs and air-conditioned bungalows should consider the demand of delinking the employment package from the return and rehabilitation policy. So the government should come to the rescue of the agitating package employees and accept their demand of delinking of employment package of migrant youth from the return and rehabilitation policy of the government. The linking together of these separate things has neither been able to provide adequate number of jobs to the unemployed youth of the displaced Kashmiri Pandits nor could it ensure the return and rehabilitation of the displaced Pandit community. The pertinent question is how many uprooted Kashmiri Pandit families has the government rehabilitated from 2009? The answer to this question is that none of the uprooted Kashmiri Pandits have been rehabilitated and settled in Kashmir. The successive centre and erstwhile state governments have miserably failed to rehabilitate even one displaced family of the Kashmiri Pandits in Kashmir. On the front of providing employment to the migrant Kashmiri Pandits, the government has not been able to provide enough jobs to them. Whatever has been provided to the displaced Pandit youth is the gift of UPA government of Manmohan Singh and BJP has not provided any job to the displaced Pandit Youth. It seems that the BJP government is only busy in making propaganda about the plight of the Pandits but it has done nothing on the ground for the displaced Kashmiri Pandits and the unemployed youth of the community. The anger is brewing among the PM package employees and they are within their right to express resentment and anger against the centre government because the BJP government of Modi is insensitive and reluctant to accept the demand of delinking the employment package from the return and rehabilitation policy. The NDA government is not considering the genuine demand of the package employees of their relocation outside the valley to Jammu division and other nearby places outside Jammu and Kashmir and thus is remaining in deep slumber so for as the relocation of the PM package employees is concerned. The NDA government should shun its ego and rigidity and accept the only and genuine demand of the relocation of the package employees. The Kashmiri Pandits and the package employees are feeling insecure and panic and there is an atmosphere of fear psychosis and in such environment the package employees cannot live and perform their duties across Kashmir valley. Therefore they should be relocated in Jammu division till there is improvement in the situation at the ground level in Kashmir. So these unfortunate and hapless employees should be adjusted temporarily in Jammu division till situation shows a marked improvement in Kashmir and then these employees can be asked to work in Kashmir. The PM employment package has unnaturally linked and clubbed with the return and rehabilitation policy and so the two things should be separated so that the hapless package employees may not suffer. Therefore there is urgent need to delink employment package of Pandit employees from the return and rehabilitation policy. There is also great requirement to relocate the PM package employees in Jammu division till the time normalcy is restored in Kashmir. The relocation of the package employees will not affect the job market and employment prospects of the Jammu based employees because the posts of the Package employees are super numeracy posts, thus they will not affect the job prospects of the Jammu employees. So there should be no confusion about the fact that PM package employees’ adjustment in Jammu division will not affect the service matters of Jammu employees. The LG government is ordering the promotion of the package employees that too after a gap of some 12 years and it seems that the government is hell bent to divide the displaced package employees and so is it ordering promotions to the package employees while the fact is that the package employees are not protesting for the promotions and other service related issues but their only and apt demand is relocation outside Kashmir so that the package employees and their families are saved. They are asking and appealing for the safety of their life, limb and dignity and so they should be temporarily adjusted in Jammu division. The package employees are begging for their survival and safety of their life and so insensitive and reluctant government which has made this genuine matter an issue of their prestige and ego should show magnanimity and order relocation without wasting time. It is very sad that the Package employees are protesting in scorching heat and in very humid temperature, but NDA government of the centre and the LG administration do not pay any head towards the protesting package employees whose ,s protest has entered 54th day and the government is unconcerned and seem to be in no mood to accept the only and genuine demand of the package employees. There is also need for ensuring that the package employees should be paid their salaries at the dates at which it is paid to all other employees. It is gross injustice and total discrimination with the package employees that they are paid salaries after other employees are given salaries. The government of LG should look after this issue of the package employees. Besides, SRO 43 should also be applied to the package employees as they too are the employees of the UT and so there should be no discrimination with these employees on this account. All said and done the PM employment package should be delinked from the return and rehabilitation package of Kashmiri Pandits so that it remains a purely economic package which actually it is. So without wasting further time the government should consider the delinking of PM employment package from return and rehabilitation policy of the Kashmiri Pandits.
(The author is a columnist and social activist).

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