Injustice of several years undone

10/03/2019

In a historic decision, the State Government has conceded long pending demand of the people living along the International Border (IB) in three districts of Jammu region by bringing them under the ambit of three percent reservations in Government jobs, educational institutions etc, which were available to the people living on Line of Control (LoC) under the `ALC Quota'.The Government has undone the discrimination meted out to the people of International Border in terms of reservations by bringing them at par with the people living on the Line of Control. They will now have reservations along with the LoC people i.e. 3 percent. A proposal for bringing the people of IB under the ambit of reservations at par with LoC was submitted to the SAC by Social Welfare Department on the basis of recommendations made by the Backward Classes Commission. Governor Satya Pal Malik headed State Administrative Council (SAC) approved the decision to this effect at its meeting held few days back and attended by all four Advisors-K Vijay Kumar, Khurshid Ganai, Kewal Kumar Sharma and K Skandan and Chief Secretary, BVR Subrahmanyam. SAC approved the proposal for bringing the people living along the IB at par with LoC in terms of reservations in Government jobs, education and other areas, wherever the reservations were applicable. People living on the LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts in Jammu region, Baramulla and Kupwara districts in Kashmir and Kargil and Leh districts in Ladakh division were covered under reservations in `ALC Category'. However, the people living along the International Border in three districts of Jammu region including Jammu, Samba and Kathua were denied the reservations.
Presently, the IB people have been brought at par with the LoC people under three percent `ALC reservation' category but there was a separate proposal prepared by the Backward Classes Commission for giving four percent reservations to the people of IB while keeping three percent reservations separately for the people living on LoC. It was a grave Constitutional anomaly and human injustice with the people of International Border done by the previous State Governments as they had accorded reservations to the people living on one part of the border (LoC) and denying same benefits to those living on other part of the border (IB). However, total reservations will go up to 56 percent as and when the Government decides to approve 10 percent reservations for newly created category of Economically Weaker Sections among the upper castes. The BJP-led NDA Government had approved 10 percent reservations for EWS among upper castes, which is yet to be implemented by the State Government.

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