Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti-led coalition government issued notification to provide employment to thousands of casual workers in the State Government.
Following Modi government's slogan of "Sabka Sath-Sabka Vikas", the ruling PDP-BJP coalition has taken a step that might lead to the permanent settlement of over 60,000 casual workers in various state government departments.
'Jammu & Kashmir Casual and Other Workers – Regular Engagement Rules 2017' outlined in SRO-520 issued by the Finance Department last evening will benefit nine categories of such appointees including daily-rated, casual, seasonal, HDF (Hospital Development Fund) and local fund workers, NYCs, donors and ad-hoc/contractual appointees left-out under the J&K Civil Services (special provisions) Act 2010 for want of eligibility criteria. The policy will also include ITI trained workers engaged by various Departments.
"During the previous budget session, the government under the leadership of CM Mehbooba Mufti made a commitment on the floor of the House that the process for regularisation of casual workers of various categories, whose fate was hanging in balance for decades, will start from the next financial year and today we have fulfilled that commitment," said Dr Haseeb Drabu, Finance Minister of J&K.
According to the SRO-520, these workers will be categorized as Skilled and Non-Skilled on the basis of their educational, technical and professional profile. The remuneration will be commensurate with the length of their engagement.
The regularization process would begin immediately. On the completion of the process, the workers= shall be designated as Government Services Assistants (GSA). They will be entitled to all the benefits including annual increment, pension under NPS, leave and medical reimbursement, periodical hike in remuneration akin to pay commission, maintenance of service records and will be covered under work, conduct and discipline rules.
The skilled workers whose period of engagement is above 10 years and upto 15 years would be initially entitled to remuneration of Rs 13000 per month, while those having more than 15 years of engagementand upto 20 years would get Rs 18000 per month. Those skilled workers who have worked for over 20 years would get monthly remuneration of Rs 24000.
The Un-Skilled workers whose period of engagement is above 10 years and upto 15 years would be initially entitled to remuneration of Rs 10000 per month, while those having more than 15 years of engagement period and upto 20 years would get Rs 15000 per month. Those un-skilled workers who have worked for over 20 years would get monthly remuneration of Rs 20000.
Eligibility for SRO-520
According to the SRO, the prospective workers for regularisation should be state subjects of J&K, possessing minimum educational qualification of 8th standard or above, on the date of their initial engagement, their age should be within minimum/maximum age limit as prescribed for appointment in the government service, they must have completed 10 years of continuous working, they must be continuing in the department as on date and their conduct must be satisfactory and no disciplinary proceedings should be pending against them.
"The provisions of Article 35-A of the J&K Civil Service Rules will apply to a CSLW in respect of determination and verification of age. The concerned Administrative Department will have the powers to grant relaxation in the age/qualification for regular engagement of a CSLW on case to case basis," the SRO states.
The NYC workers will initially be re-engaged on the wages, which were paid to them before their disengagement. The orders of their re-engagement will be issued by the Youth, Services and Sports Department.
The land donors, who have donated their land free of cost to the Government, will be eligible for engagement as casual workers on the recommendations of a Committee to be constituted by the concerned Administrative Departments and to be headed by the concerned Administrative Secretary.
"The cases of land donors, who have donated land after 31.12.2001 will be considered. The minimum land donated should be one kanal of proprietary land and it should be legally mutated in favour of the State Government," the SRO said.
It added the left out adhoc/contractual/consolidated workers, who were not entitled to regularization under the provisions of J&K Civil Services (Special Provisions) Act, 2010, will also be considered for regular engagement at par with casual, seasonal and daily rated workers subject to fulfillment of eligibility criteria.
What is SRO-520?
- 9 categories of casuals including daily-rated, casual, seasonal, HDF (Hospital Development Fund) and local fund workers, NYCs, land donors, ITI workers and ad-hoc/contractual appointees left-out under the J&K Civil Services (special provisions) Act 2010 for want of eligibility criteria, to benefit from Regularisation Policy
- They will be designated as General Service Assistants (GSAs) after regularization
- GSAs to get a minimum monthly remuneration of Rs 10000 and a maximum of Rs 24000 depending on their skills and length of engagement
- They will be entitled to an annual hike of 3% on remuneration
- They shall be covered under NPS along-with Employer's Share to be contributed by the Govt
- They shall be entitled to Leave & Medical Reimbursement benefits
- The service bio-data/ records of a GSAs shall be maintained at the level of Head of Office in each department in the form of a Service Book
- The GSAs shall continue in a department upto the age of 60 years
- For purposes of conduct, discipline and appeal, a GSA shall be regulated in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Jammu & Kashmir Civil Services (Employees) Conduct