SRINAGAR: An official delegation led by Addl Chief Secretary, H&ME, Vivek Bhardwaj on Tuesday briefed the visiting Parliamentary Standing Committee on the welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes about different welfare schemes and programmes under implementation in Jammu and Kashmir.
The delegation provided an overview of all the welfare measures and schemes under implementation here in J&K. They also replied the queries and concerns projected by the Parliamentary Committee (PC) members led by MP, Dr Kirit P. Solanki.
The officers informed the Parliamentary Committee that UT has successfully conducted elections to all 3 tiers of panchayat and all municipal bodies with reservation to SCs & STs in proportion of population and therefore the communities have got representation at grass root democratic institutions for the first time in the history of J&K.
They further gave out that the Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, -1989 became applicable to the UT of J&K post abrogation of the Article. It was given out that the Forest Rights Act, 2006 has been implemented; a nomadic survey has been conducted for the first time in J&K.
With respect to a reservation in jobs, it was said that under J&K Reservation Act 2004 & the J&K Reservation Rules 2005 thereunder, reservation to SCs @8% & to STs @ 10% is provided in direct recruitment and for admission in professional institutions including MD/ MS/ M.Tech /Engineering /Agriculture Science and other professional courses.
Moreover, the committee was apprised that there is no manual scavenging happening anywhere in the UT and electricity has been provided to every household including SCs and STs. The PC was also assured by the officers that safe water connections to every households including SCs/STs would be realised by next year and hamlets with 1000 or more population to have roads by March, 2021.
In addition to these the official delegation listed out various other measures undertaken by different departments for the educational, health and livelihood up gradation of such population.
The delegation also included Principal Secretary Skill Development, Commissioner Secretary Labour and Employment, Secretary Social Welfare, Secretary Tribal Affairs, Secretary Planning, MD NRLM, Secretary Law and several other officers of the UT administration.
Pertinent to mention here that the Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes consists of 30 members – 20 elected by Lok Sabha and 10 by Rajya Sabha from amongst their members. Out of these currently 22 are on the visit to UT of J&K.
The mandate of the committee is to examine the measures taken by the union government to secure due representation of the SCs and STs in services and posts under its control. These include appointments in the Public Sector Undertakings, Nationalised Banks, Statutory and Semi-Government Bodies and in the Union Territories with regard to the provisions of Article 335 of the Indian Constitution.