The State cabinet, which met here today with Chief Minister, Ms Mehbooba Mufti in chair, welcomed the resumption of Indo-Pak talks and hailed the Prime Minister, Mr Narendra Modi’s efforts of reviving the peace process in the region.
“The Cabinet observed that while peace process between India and Pakistan is of great significance for the whole South Asian region, it has the greatest impact on Jammu and Kashmir which faces the maximum brunt because of Indo-Pak hostilities,” Minister for Education, Mr Naeem Akhtar said while briefing the media-persons about the decisions taken in today’s cabinet meeting.
He said in another significant decision, the Cabinet authorized the Department of Industries and Commerce to work-out the modalities for establishing banking facilities for the cross-LoC trade. “This follows the go-ahead from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to institutionalize the cross-LoC trade through a proper banking mechanism and doing away with the present barter system,” he said and added that this important decision would go a long way in expanding the scope and ambit of the cross-LoC trade.
Akhtar, who is also the State Government spokesman, said in another decision, the Cabinet gave its nod to develop tourism infrastructure at selected border points in Jammu and Kashmir for promotion of border tourism. “To begin with the Government has decided to develop tourism infrastructure at Suchetgarh and Chamlyal in Jammu region,” he said and added that such facilities would be extended to other border areas in the State as well over a period of time.
Akhtar said to take a call on the issue of such persons who have been temporarily engaged in various departments between 2009 and 2014, the cabinet approved setting up of an Aadhaar-based mechanism for ascertaining the actual number and skill proficiency of all such appointees, which runs into thousands. He said the process of data-compilation of such persons would be completed within three months. He said various categories of such engagements include daily-rated workers, work charge employees, casual laborers, seasonal laborers, part-time workers, CIC operators, Prism-men, settlement assistants, NYCs, hammals/drivers of CA&PD Department, paramedical staff engaged under BADP, persons engaged against hospital development fund, persons engaged under CSS, NHM, SSA, RMSA etc and part-time sweepers of different departments.
In another important decision, Akhtar said the cabinet also approved a roadmap for implementation of the interest-subvention scheme for flood-hit traders under PM’s Special Package. He said the identified flood-affected traders would get 5% interest subsidy on the loans availed from banks during the next four years with a slab of Rs 5 lakh loan amount.
The Minister said the cabinet also approved enhancement of the honorarium of the village Numberdars and Chowkidars. He said the honorarium of the Numberdar has been enhanced to Rs 1501 from Rs 751 and that of Chowkidar has been enhanced to Rs 1500 from Rs 750. He said in view of the Panchayat system having been put in place in the State, the Government would assign new job profile to the Numberdaras and Chowkidars which would be announced soon.
The Cabinet, Akhtar said, also approved reorganization of the State’s Planning and Development Department to properly channelize the development funds and ensure its gainful utilization. He said the P&D Department would have five divisions including Development Strategy Division, Project Formulation Division, Area Planning Division, Project Monitoring and Evaluation Division and Coordination Division. The Minister said that the Cabinet also approved to bring KPS service under the ambit of the Cabinet Sub-Committee already constituted for cadre review and other related issues of KAS. Cabinet, he said also approved induction of officers from various feeding services in KAS.