Jammu: Facing criticism for his handling of the issue of Kashmiri Pandit employees, Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Thursday said their safety is his administration’s topmost priority.
The LG is under fire over protests by Kashmiri Pandits who were employed under a prime minister’s package, and are seeking relocation from Kashmir in the wake of targeted killings.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday alleged that Kashmir Pandits are facing injustice at the hands of the government and asked the LG to apologise to the community for telling the PM’s package employees that they should not seek “alms”.
Gandhi made the statement shortly after a KP delegation called on him during his Bharat Jodo Yatra in Samba district.
Addressing a republic day function here on Thursday, he said “The administration is trying to solve the problems of Kashmiri Pandit brothers and sisters with utmost sensitivity. Their safety is our topmost priority.”
He said all PM package and minority employees working in the Kashmir valley have been deployed at safe places. “A nodal officer has been appointed in the Raj Bhavan and in every district to resolve issues related to their security and other problems.”
The LG also said the longstanding issue of availability of land for them has been resolved and the construction of 3,000 accommodations for KPs will be completed this year.
On January 20th, the foundation stone for another residential colony was laid in Zevan, Srinagar, which will resolve the problem of accommodation for employees posted in Srinagar, he added.
“All pending promotions of employees appointed under the PM package have been cleared and the issue of promotions from non-gazetted to gazetted category has been forwarded to the Public Service Commission,” he added.
The Kashmir Migrant Portal, launched in September last year for registering grievances related to illegal encroached on properties during the 1990s, has got 8,408 applications and action has been taken on 6336 of them, resulting in the removal of encroachment from 2608 kanals of land, he said.
The LG said 2022 was a year of achievements for Jammu and Kashmir.
“However, we have higher aspirations and bigger goals for the future. We have to capitalise on the present opportunity and take a pledge to build a competitive Jammu and Kashmir which will be prosperous, safe and peaceful where daughters are given equal rights and opportunities for development; and where the rural and urban divide is diminished,” he added.