Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Delhi to salvage Omar Govt from Dogra Certificate quagmire All permanent residents being declared entitled to benefit in recruitment

Delhi to salvage Omar Govt from Dogra Certificate quagmire 
All permanent residents being declared entitled to benefit in recruitment  
4/20/2011 12:33:25 AM

Ahmed Ali Fayyaz 

SRINAGAR, Apr 19: Taking separatist hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani’s ultimatum on withdrawal of Dogra Certificate order seriously, Congress-led UPA government at the Centre is likely to come to the 
rescue of Omar Abdullah-led coal ition government in Jammu and Kashmir. Authorities in the union Ministry of Home Affairs are now working on a damage control exercise. Even as a subordinate judicial court in Budgam has admitted a petition against the order and the Bar Association in Jammu is reportedly planning to challenge this move in the High Court, MHA is likely to declare all permanent residents of the state entitled to the benefit in recruitment in all paramilitary forces. 
Highly placed authoritative sources revealed to Early Times that in follow up to Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s threadbare discussion on Dogra Certificate issue with Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and the UPA Chairperson, Sonia Gandhi, MHA had begun drafting of a notification that would declare all permanent residents of J&K state entitled to certain benefits in recruitments in CRPF, BSF and other paramilitary forces. This, according to sources, 
would automatically put an end to the practice of issuing ‘Dogra Certificate’ to residents of Jammu province who, until now, are the exclusive beneficiaries of the document being issued by Tehsildars 
Following complaints of some National Panthers Party legislators in the state Legislative Assembly over “delay” in issuing the certificate, Department of Revenue had issued Government Order No: Rev 
(LB) 69 of 2011 Dated 25-03-2011, notifying Tehsildars as the competent authority in issuing ‘Dogra Certificate’. It was later amended on April 7th when Government made it clear that Dogra 
Certificates to be issued by Tehsildars (Territorial) to residents of Jammu province would be only for the purpose of seeking certain relaxations in recruitment of staff in the central paramilitary 

As some right wing forces, led by Geelani in Kashmir and some opposition leaders in Jammu for conflicting purposes, begam stirring up the issue, a resident of Chadoura area challenged the order in the court of CJM Budgam. The court put the order in abeyance and issued notices to the state government. It is being widely speculated that Government itself was behind the move as its attorneys did not raise any objections. According to reports, a section of Bar in Jammu is planning to challenge jurisdiction of the CJM’s court in the High Court. Meanwhile, on April 18th, Geelani served an ultimatum while asking the state government to completely withdraw its March 25th order before April 30th or else face the consequences. 
Perceiving Geelani’s ultimatum as the first serious threat to six-month-long calm and a promising tourist season in the Valley, Omar Abdullah government, according to sources, decided to seek New Delhi’s help in salvaging itself from the quagmire. As of now, a sense of public outrage is absent in both Kashmir (over March 25th order) as well as in Jammu (over the suggestion of revocation), but situation 
analysts have just begun drawing parallels between May 2008 and May 2011. 

“Geelani had begun the embryonic stage of 2008 Amarnath Pilgrimage 
row with a simple statement over the need to keep the environment on the Yatra route free of pollution”, reminded an analyst. He asserted that the octogenarian separatist hawk had the capacity of stoking the regional fires with the fuel of Dogra Certificate in one or two months---beginning of the hyper-sensitive pilgrimage season. Withdrawal of the order was perceived to be impossible as such a notification had the potential of an ignition in Jammu. The political executive from Srinagar to New Delhi seems to be unanimous over the central intervention as an order declaring all permanent resident 
certificate holders entitled to the recruitment benefit could offset issuance of Dogra Certificate. 


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