Jammu, Dec 14: Secretary, Social Welfare, Dr Farooq Ahmad Lone Friday reviewed the modalities for ensuring effective implementation of J&K Maintenance & Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act-2014.
The Act provides for comprehensive legal framework for elderly care system in the State including establishment of Old Age Homes and Senior Citizens Welfare Fund. It also provides for constitution of Maintenance Tribunal, Appellate Tribunal, State Advisory Council and Conciliation Officers to address the issues of Senior Citizens.
Executive Director/Secretary, State Social Welfare Board, Dr Khalid Hussain Malik informed the meeting that the proposals for establishment of Maintenance and Appellate Tribunal have been moved to Planning/Finance Department by the Administrative Department.
It was decided that till formal appointment of Conciliation Officers, the concerned CDPOs shall be designated as Conciliation Officers in their respective areas of jurisdiction while District Social Welfare Officers shall be designated as Maintenance Officers in their areas of jurisdiction.
The meeting also reviewed the modalities for constitution of State Advisory Council and District Committees for the effective implementation of the Act.
Secretary Social Welfare called for effective implementation of the Act on the ground so that its benefits reach to the intended senior citizens in need of care.
He said the project of old-age home at Jammu is in progress at a cost of Rs 9.73 crore and all Deputy Commissioners have been asked to identify land at the earliest for establishment of Old-Age Homes in their respective districts.
The meeting also discussed the modalities for institution of Welfare Fund for Senior Citizens to implement programmes for welfare and rehabilitation of senior citizens and to meet their medical exigencies.
Representatives of pensioners’ associations present in the meeting also gave their suggestions on how to make elderly care system more effective in the State.
Among others Commissioner Disabilities Mohammad Iqbal Lone, Director Social Welfare Department Jammu Dr Bharat Bhushan, Additional Secretary Social Welfare Department, Babu Ram, Director ICDS, Veer Ji Hangloo, Officers of Social Welfare Department and representatives of Pensioner’s and Senior Citizen’s Association attended the meeting.
Sumo transporters demand early abolition of toll tax in Anantnag
Srinagar, May 19: Seeking Governor Satya Pal Malik’s intervention, the South Kashmir Sumo Transport Association (SKSSTA) on Sunday demanded early abolition of toll tax levied at Chursoo toll plaza in Anantnag district.
The decision to impose toll tax was taken by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI), earlier this month.
The move came under severe criticism not only from the stake holders but from the political parties as well, who demanding abolition of this tax.
While threatening to go on hunger strike after Ramadan against the decision President, SKSTA, Abid Ali Din said the move was taken in haste.
“Local people should be exempted. The transport sector is already struggling amid huge fuel charges. The amount of Rs 170(to and fro) as toll tax is huge sum. If government remains adamant on its decision, we will be left with no option other than to increase the fare,”he said.
He said despite assurances from the concerned authorities nothing has happened so far with regard to the abolition of toll tax.
“Few days back, we appealed Divisional Commissioner to look into our issue. He said that the matter has been brought into the notice of Governor. He had assured that our concerns would be addressed but so far nothing has happened,” said chairman, SKSTA, Mohammad Ashraf.
“We don’t want to increase the fare, we don’t want to put extra burden on the passengers,”Ashraf added.
BJP leader Mir’s killing: TIP of arrested militant; bureaucrats ignored warnings
Srinagar, May 19: A Test Identification Parade (TIP) of arrested JeM militant Hilal Naikoo will be conducted in connection with BJP leader Gul Mohammed Mir’s killing in Anantnag as an internal probe indicated lapses at bureaucratic level despite a clear threat to him, officials said.
The family of 57-year-old Mir, who unsuccessfully contested on BJP ticket in 2008 and 2014 assembly elections from Dooru in South Kashmir, has claimed that Naikoo was present in the squad that killed the politician outside his home on May 4.
Mir, whose affidavit shows his age as 52 in the 2014 assembly polls, was shot dead outside his residence at Nowgam in Verinag area of South Kashmir.
He was shifted to a hospital in a critical condition but was declared brought dead by the doctors there. Recently, the Jammu and Kashmir police arrested Hilal Naikoo from Dooru. Police officials said that they would be carrying out his TIP soon.
The killing had rattled Governor Satya Pal Malik’s administration in Jammu and Kashmir and Additional Director General of Police Munir Khan was appointed to inquire into the lapses.
Earlier, Malik had ordered an inquiry headed by state Chief Secretary B V R Subrahmanyam to “identify lapses” but withdrew later after political parties accused the top bureaucrat of creating a chaotic situation by withdrawing security of some people in Kashmir Valley.
The internal probe shows that the Home Ministry had written in February this year to the chief secretary for providing security to Mir but it was not adhered to, officials said.
In its communication, the Home Ministry had sent representation from Mir along with intelligence inputs about increasing his security, instead, the security was withdrawn completely, they said.
The local police cited an order from state home department in which it was categorically mentioned that if the security personnel do not report back to their parent units by or before April 5, 2019, the salary equivalent shall be deducted from the salary of district superintendents of police or commandants.
“In case where personal security officials have been deployed unauthorisedly, the salary equivalent of such personnel would be deducted from the salary of concerned officers for such unauthorised deployment.
“The security to politicians is provided on local inputs and not institutionalised through any proper mechanism which includes clearing of names through a screening committee,” they said.
The order, according to the officials, prompted many district police heads to withdraw security immediately fearing deduction in their salaries, they said.
Mir’s son, Zahoor Ahmed Mir, had said that his father’s security had been withdrawn two months back and all efforts to get it back had fallen on deaf ears.
“I had given a letter of the BJP leaders to SSP Anantnag but he expressed his helplessness and directed me to see Munir Khan (Additional Director General of Polce in charge of security),” he said.
According to the officials, Mir was included in the list ordered by the chief secretary in February this year despite opposition by security agencies which had suggested that no security should be withdrawn until the election process is completed.
However, the chief secretary ordered reconstitution of the screening committee, removed police officials from it and appointed state Home Secretary Shaleen Kabra as its chairman, a move which has been criticised.
Since the withdrawal of security, politicians have been easy prey for militants.
A panch, Abdul Majeed Dar, was killed in Kulgam on April 4 and a National Conference (NC) worker, Mohammad Ismail Wani, sustained injuries after being shot at on March 14.
On March 30, suspected militants shot dead social activist Arjumand Majid Bhat in Baramulla district of north Kashmir.
Handloom dept violates Govt order, gives contract of uniform purchase to outside state
Srinagar, May 19: The State’s Handloom Department has violated the Government order by giving Rs 5 crore contract of SSA uniform to outside state, despites clear directions from the government to make these uniforms from Power Loom Corporation.
This decision has repercussions on power looms of they will not be in a position to manufacture uniforms.
“As per government order No: 1456-GAD of 1983, issued by the General Administration Department, vide No: GD/(Adm)55/83-Ind, dated 20-09-1983 all the government departments are required to make the purchase of all types of textile items only from the J&K State Handloom Development Corporation Limited (J&KSHDC).”
The order says that all government departments are impressed upon to make purchase of the textile requirements in their departments from the state handloom development corporation only on the prices/rates fixed by the High Powered Committee in its meeting held on 08-05-2015 and ensure compliance of the aforementioned Government orders.
Every year government’s education department asks the Handloom Corporation to purchase uniforms for its students.
Officials in the Handloom Corporation say that these uniforms have to be manufactured by power looms in the state to strengthen the local economy and loom owners of the state. However, the officials said, that Handloom Corporation gave the contract to an outside state manufacturer to make uniforms, which is violative of the government order.
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