STATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Wednesday said that her government would regularise the services of 60,000 daily wagers and casual labourers working in various departments.
The decision is being seen as a major respite as daily wagers and casual labourers often went on strike with the demand for regularisation, hampering government work in the state.
The process to formulate a road map to regularise them was started this year with the State government constituting a high-level committee for the purpose.
“Our govt will be regularizing 60,000 daily wagers & casual labourers working in various departments in J&K to provide sustainable livelihoods to those who need it the most.
Hard work & dedication must always be recognized & appreciated,” Mufti tweeted.
The panel headed by Chief Secretary B B Vyas submitted its report to the Finance Department in October, stating that the total number of workers engaged in 31 departments under 15 different categories, including casual labourers and seasonal workers, was 1,00,501.
The State Cabinet had approved the roadmap for regularisation of casual, seasonal labourers and daily rated workers on October 23. But the implementation of the report submitted by the panel, headed by the Chief Secretary and accepted by the government was pending final nod thereby generating apprehensions among the stakeholders that the issue would be stretched to the next elections.
The politics of populism has been high point of governance in the state, which is why the daily rated engagements have taken place under all the dispensations notwithstanding the ban. However, none of the government took a timely decision to regularize those engaged that led to frequent strikes, especially in the utility services departments like Power and Public Health Engineering. This resulted in disruption of the drinking water several times, even during the scorching summers.
The associations of the aggrieved daily rated workers evoked politicization as well with leaders of opposition showing solidarity with them.
The panel set up by the government had spelled out a roadmap for regularization of casual,seasonal labourers and daily rated workers so as to ensure sustainable livelihood to thousands of persons and engagements which were made from time to time. These casual workers are engaged in all Government Departments including Public Health Engineering, Irrigation and Flood Control, Power Development Department, Public Works Department, Horticulture, Floriculture.
In 2008, the then government had put a complete ban on temporary engagements which was followed-up by another order by the previous dispensation in 2011.
Even the present government had imposed a ban on engagements on casual or seasonal or need-based worker and ad hoc appointees.
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