Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has finally realised the importance of keeping migrant Kashmiri pandits in good humour.
Chairing a meeting of the Apex Advisory committee for migrants Omar on Friday directed the Power Development Department for providing free electric supply to the inmates of Jagti township and other migrant camps up to the maximum of 100 units per month without any consideration of the inmate being employee or not. He also directed the PDD Department to maintain the power supply system in the township.
This was not the only gesture. Omar also claimed that the state govt would work out a strategy to engage another 3,000 Kashmiri Migrant youth in Government jobs in the Valley who are ready to return to their native place and serve here.
He said 2,160 Kashmiri migrant youth have been employed so far in the Valley while the selection for another 1,443 posts is under process. He said as soon as these posts are filled up the process for recruiting another lot of 3,000 migrant youth would start. “We have already taken up this issue with the Centre and hope very positive response in this regard”, he said.
Reaching out further to the members of the migrant community Omar said his govt has vehemently taken up the issue of enhancing building construction finance available to migrants who want to return and construct their houses from present Rs. 7.5 lakh to over Rs. 20 lakhs with the Union Government and is being persuaded constantly.
The Chief Minister directed for holding special workshops by EDI at migrant camps in Jammu and in the Valley to make migrant youth aware of the self-employment schemes and facilities available to them to launch livelihood generating units. He said there is ample opportunity for migrant youth to take self-employment as the means of their livelihood by utilizing the provisions of SKEWPY and other self-employment programmes under implementation in the State.
The Chief Minister asked the Relief and Rehabilitation Organization to make migrants intending to return aware that if they avail the present available assistance of Rs. 7.5 lakh for construction of houses they would not be debarred from receiving the enhanced amount. “Any migrant taking Rs. 7.5 lakh would get all the enhanced amount when the ceiling will be raised as proposed by the State Government to the Centre”, he said.
Omar Abdullah directed for constitution of Sub-Committees to look into various aspects of return and rehabilitation of migrants in the Valley as also the issues confronting them in various migrant camps. “I want these Committees immediately in place so that they would give their comprehensive report before April next when I will be again reviewing the migrant issues in the Apex Advisory Committee”, he maintained.
The Chief Minister also directed for early taking over of water supply project at Jagti by PHE Department and ensuring regular drinking water to the inmates in the colony.
Omar Abdullah while taking brief on the construction of Hospital in Jagti asked the Relief and Rehabilitation Organization to ask the Executing Agency for fast track completion of the project. He also directed for making adequate health facilities and medicines available at Jagti and other migrant camps.
The Chief Minister told the Organization to route proposal for creation of engineering wing for the Organization through R&B Department so that a comprehensive view is taken in this regard.
The Chief Minister also gave nod to the proposal to effect modification to the Prime Minister’s package to enable all families who opt to return to Valley to avail the benefits under the package for reconstruction of houses even if such families have sold their properties after 1997. The amendment will also ensure establishing of clusters at District level besides making employees living in transit camps entitled to avail the benefit under the scheme and also reduce the demand for construction of additional transit camp units.
The meeting was attended by Minister of State for Revenue, Ajaz Ahmad Khan, Legislator and Chairperson, Social Welfare Advisory Board, Khem Lata Wakhloo, Legislator, Vijay Bakaya, Chief Secretary, Mohammad Iqbal Khandey, Divisional Commissioner, Kashmir, Shilender Kumar, Secretary Revenue, Vinod Koul, Secretary General Department, Mohammad Ashraf Bukhari, Relief Commissioner, R. K Pandita and various other senior officers.