Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh announced recently that nine new battalions would be constituted, among which two would be for the border areas.
Singh added that two new women battalions have also been sanctioned for the J&K police, one for Kashmir Division and for Jammu Division. The battalions will primarily deal with incidents like stone pelting in Kashmir valley and other law and order duties. The move is expected to provide employment to around 2000 women from the state.
The announcement was made by the Home Minister while addressing a press conference in Jammu on the second day of his visit to the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Reiterating the union government's commitment to safeguard the interests of border people and Kashmir migrants in Jammu and Kashmir, the Home Minister said that centre is fully aware of the hardships faced by these people and has been taking a number of initiatives to address them.
Initiatives taken by the government in the interest of border people:
• The Home Ministry would be providing the border youth with 60 percent quota in the special five IRP battalions being raised.
• The Ministry has also revisited the scheme of giving Rs 5 lakhs for the people killed during cross-border firing and ceasefire violations. Now, the amount would be directly credited to the account of the next of kin of the person killed and all conditions relating to fixed deposit have been removed.
• Further, 14, 460 bunkers will be constructed in border areas, which includes 13,029 individual and 1,431 community bunkers. The Home Affairs Ministry has already approved Rs 415 crores for their construction.
• The Union Government is also contemplating the construction of Seema-Bhawans for the safety of border people.
• Five bulletproof ambulances will also be provided to border areas to carry the injured to hospital during cross-border firing.
• The Government has also increased the compensation for live-stock to Rs 50,000 from current Rs 30,000 and has removed the limit of three animals for losses incurred upon livestock.
Following are some of the initiatives taken in the interests of migrants in J&K:
• The Government would be providing financial assistance worth Rs 5.5 lakh per family for the West Pakistan refugees settled in Jammu and Kashmir. The decision will benefit nearly 5764 families.
• The government has also increased the relief given to Kashmiri and Jammu migrants to Rs 13000 per family per month, a 30 per cent hike from the previously given amount of Rs 10000.
• Besides, an Advisory board for migrants would be constituted to look into the problems faced by them. The board would have representation from all the migrant groups.