‘Frivolous norms will further demoralize Pahari Community’
SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) on Saturday urged the J&K government to do away with unnecessary delay in issuance of Persons Speaking Pahari (PSP) certificate to members of the community who would otherwise get deprived of benefits of reservation in fresh recruitment drive.
In a joint statement issued here, JKAP leaders and former legislators–Zaffar Iqbal Manhas, Raja Manzooor, Javed Beigh and Javed Ahmad Mirchal urged the Lieutenant Governor G.C Murmu to issue necessary directions to the administration especially the revenue department to issue PSP certificates to the members of Pahari community who have been brought under a separate reservation category in April 2020.
“The concerned revenue officers are not issuing these reservation certificates to the members of Pahari community on the pretext that the government may apply income slab as one of the preconditions for issuance of such credentials. Since there is no such qualifying parameter for availing PSP certificates by a member of the Pahari community, the administration seems to be deliberately depriving this community of benefits guaranteed under law,” the JKAP leaders remarked.
They added that the needless delay in issuance of these certificates is bound to affect thousands of candidates who may suffer and lose their chances in absence of PSP certificates in the fresh recruitment initiative taken by the government.
“Since Pahari Speaking People (PSP) has been clubbed under “Socially & Educationally Backward Classes” like RBA under state reservation rules, there are some voices pressing to implement the income bar for PSP candidates. The government must come clear on this matter and remove the confusion prevailing in the administration,” the JKAP leaders demanded.
They observed that implementation of the income bar will dilute the identity of this minority community and the same will hamper their struggle for seeking inclusive development and ST status of the Pahari Community.
“Any such frivolous precondition like income bar will lead to revalidation of PSP certificates after certain periods like RBA. Although the RBA category has ever changing parameters like inclusion/exclusion of new areas, development index, migrations etc, PSP reservation on the other hand is a community based reservation like SC and ST and will remain static. So there should be no requirement for revalidation of such certificates,” they demanded.
The JKAP leaders remarked that once someone is certified as a member of Pahari Community he or she will remain a Pahari all along his or her life. “So what is the need for periodic revalidation or certification of such certificate holders? These preconditions are irrational and the government must do away with such notions in the administration,” they demanded.
These leaders averred that the eligibility criteria for PSP in the government order of 20 April, 2020 mentions language and other cultural traits as the parameters for getting PSP. “There is no mention of any income criteria or creamy layer. There has been unnecessary confusion created by Competent Authorities and it must be resolved at the earliest so that Pahari candidates can apply for the PSP posts being advertised by the government,” they said.
They also censured the government for depriving the PSP candidates from taking benefits under ALC and EWS categories despite most of them residing in border areas of the J&K. “By virtue of a recent GAD order, the PSP candidates have been dispossessed from taking benefits of EWS category reservation in state government recruitment which is a huge discrimination with them. Now putting any trivial preconditions in issuance of PSP certificate will further demoralize this marginalized community,” the JKAP leaders remarked.