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Committee to probe misuse of Estates’ quarters

Srinagar, Feb 11: Estates Department has constituted a committee to identify illegal occupants in its residential quarters in the state.

There are allegations that government has allotted Estates Department quarters “illegally” to outsiders.

 

“There are complaints that outsiders, including political workers, politicians and bureaucrats relatives are staying in government accommodation in the state,” an official of the Estates Department said.

The official said the committee has been framed to unveil the facts.

“Let’s wait for the report so that action is taken,” the official added.

Assistant Director Estates is heading the committee, while there are also representatives of Non-Gazetted Employees Union, Civil Secretariat and Lower Grade Employees Union Civil Secretariat in it.

The committee has been directed to conduct the physical verification of residential colonies in Jammu “in order to identify illegal occupants” and submit report within 15 days.

Government is accommodating move employees in quarters of Estates Department which, as per officials, are “inadequate” to meet the requirement of the employees.

They are entitled for the government accommodation as per the norms.

For rest of the employees, the government has been hiring private hotels and guest houses, costing crores of rupees to the state exchequer.

President Non Gazetted Employees Union, Ghulam Rasool Mir, claimed that hundreds of quarters have been allotted “illegally” to outsiders.

“Around 500 people are residing in Estates Department quarters illegally in the state resulting there is inadequate accommodation for move employees in Srinagar and Jammu,” Mir accused.

“There are a few people who run Facebook pages and have been allotted accommodation, which is meant for journalists. Politicians’ workers and relatives also reside in government accommodation,” he said.

Sources said the government is spending over Rs 90 crore annually on private accommodations being hired for Darbar employees.

The official said the government has to provide accommodation to over 6,000 employees for six months both in Srinagar and Jammu.

“But the employees do not get the adequate accommodation,” Mir added.

Government had decided several times to utilize state land effectively where additional accommodation could be developed for these employees.

There is a proposal for construction of new flats at Pampore.

Estates Department is also going to acquire land at Tulsibagh for building new accommodation.