J&K Rehabilitation Assistance Scheme, 2022 amended | Domiciled armed forces, paramilitary forces personnel’s dependents to be among beneficiaries

Jammu, Dec 22: The dependent family members of the domiciled armed forces or paramilitary forces’ personnel killed, while discharging their duties in connection with law and order situation or militancy or terrorist related action or as a result of enemy action, will, now, be eligible for compassionate appointment or monetary compensation under Jammu and Kashmir Rehabilitation Assistance Scheme (JKRAS), 2022.

However, in case of dependent of a government employee, who dies in harness or retired on invalid pension, in case the “death occurs due to militancy or terrorist action or due to law and order situation, it will be certified by the concerned Deputy Commissioner, where the death has occurred, that the deceased employee is not involved in militancy or terrorist related activities.”

These changes have been incorporated following amendments in the Jammu and Kashmir Rehabilitation Assistance Scheme, 2022, notified on Friday.

Amendments have been made by the Lieutenant Governor in exercise of the powers conferred by Article 309 of the Constitution of India.

As per the amended Clause 2 of the Scheme, it will “apply to the compassionate appointment or monetary compensation in favour of a person who is a family member of a government employee who dies in harness or retired on invalid pension. Provided that in case the death occurs due to militancy or terrorist action or due to law and order situation, it will be certified by the concerned Deputy Commissioner, where the death has occurred, that the deceased employee is not involved in militancy or terrorist related activities.”

Besides it will apply to the “compassionate appointment or monetary compensation in favour of a person who is a family member of – a member of the Armed Forces or Paramilitary Forces, who is a domicile of Jammu and Kashmir and is killed while discharging the duties in connection with law and order situation or militancy or terrorist related action or as a result of enemy action.”

It has been clarified that for the purpose of this Scheme, ‘Armed Force’ will mean “Navy, Military, Air Forces” and ‘Domicile’ means “domicile as defined in Section 3A of Jammu and Kashmir Civil Services (Decentralization and Recruitment) Act, 2010” while ‘Para Military Force’ would mean a force constituted under any law for the time being in force made by the Competent Legislature.

‘Family member’ in the ambit of Scheme will include spouse, son, daughter (including adopted son or daughter as permissible under law), brother or sister in case of an unmarried government servant who was actually dependent on the government employee.

While the ‘government employee’ will cover the employee as defined under Jammu and Kashmir, Government Employees (Conduct) Rules, 1971 and who is not working on daily wages or casual or apprentice or adhoc or contract or re-employment basis.

The dependent of “a person who has been regularized under any law for the time being in force in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir but his death has occurred prior to his or her regularization,” will not be eligible under the scheme. As per the amended Scheme, ‘re-employment’ will not include employment of an ex-serviceman before the normal age of retirement to a civil post.

On September 7, 2022, the Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha led-Union Territory government had notified JKRAS, 2022 for the dependent family members of its regular employees in place of “Compassionate Appointment Rules” so far in vogue.

It was specified that the application for compassionate appointment or monetary compensation online under JKRAS, 2022 on the designated portal would not be considered, if the same was not made within one year of the death or retirement on invalid pension of the government servant.

With its enforcement, the Jammu and Kashmir (Compassionate Appointment) Rules, 1994, as amended from time to time, was repealed.

Under the Scheme, Administrative Secretary General Administrative Department (GAD) will be competent authority to make compassionate appointments and grant monetary compensation.

Besides, the Lieutenant Governor through Chief Secretary in coordination, as per the procedure for transaction of Government Business in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir will be the competent authority for making compassionate appointments in the cases where relaxations are involved.

Under the Scheme, the appointments can be made only against the posts for Multi Tasking Staff or equivalent or lowest non-Gazetted cadre posts in the Department. To claim for these compassionate appointments, the dependent family member of the employee should be eligible and suitable for the post in all respects under the provisions of the relevant Recruitment Rules.

Applicant, who is a Graduate or having higher qualification, can also be considered for appointment against a lowest non-gazetted post or MuIti Tasking Staff post notwithstanding the bar on higher qualification prescribed in the extant Rules. He or she (applicant) will be assessed with regard to the Relative Merit Points Assessment Scheme (RMPAS) on a 100 point scale and will be required to meet the standards laid down for compassionate appointment with regard to RMPAS.

The Scheme also provides that if the applicant fulfils the eligibility criteria prescribed in this Scheme for compassionate appointment into the Government service and is considered for compassionate appointment under this Scheme, he or she will have the option to refuse the appointment. In case, the applicant chooses to do so, he or she will be entitled to a monetary compensation of Rs 5 lakh in lieu of appointment on compassionate grounds in the Government service.

The dependant, who does not meet the standards laid down for compassionate appointment to the government service with reference to RMPAS will be considered for grant of monetary compensation. The dependents of the deceased employees will be paid monetary compensation of Rs 5 lakhs. The liability to pay compensation on the part of the government would arise from the date of the order passed by the authority competent to sanction the monetary compensation, the notification specified.

As a part of this Scheme, the government may also support the application of the dependents, if he or she so requests, under various self employment or government sponsored employment generating schemes to the banks for obtaining credit as per the laid down norms for setting up a manufacturing unit or a trading venture. These compassionate appointments are exempted from Recruitment procedure i.e. recruitment on the basis of recommendations of the Service Selection Board or any other recruiting agency.

Upper age and educational qualification prescribed in the relevant Recruitment Rules may be relaxed wherever found to be necessary. The lower age limit shall, however, in no case be relaxed below 18 years of age. The powers of relaxation of upper age shall vest with the Lieutenant Governor through Chief Secretary in coordination, it has been clarified in the Scheme.

Age eligibility will be determined with reference to the date of application and not the date of appointment.

Appointment on compassionate grounds will be made only on a regular basis and that too only, if regular vacancies meant for that purpose are available and will be made in a centralized manner in the General Administration Department. GAD will every year hold back up to 5 percent of vacancies in the categories across all the departments to be filled by direct recruitment through J&K Services Selection Board or otherwise, so as to fill such vacancies by appointment on compassionate grounds.

The vacancies against which compassionate appointments can be considered under this Scheme will be computed every year as on the first January of the year in which compassionate appointments are to be made. In case, eligible applicants may exceed the posts available in a given quarter, their list will be carried forward to the next quarter and the applicants considered against the posts available in that quarter up to and including the fifth year from the date of application submitted by the applicant after which he or she will be delisted.

The unfilled vacancies in a year shall be carried forward to the next year and shall be available for appointment on compassionate grounds under this Scheme. 5 percent of the total vacancies identified for compassionate appointments in a particular year will be available for consideration in relaxation of rules with the approval of Chief Minister/Lieutenant Governor through Chief Secretary in Coordination.

The Scheme specifies that a person selected for appointment on compassionate grounds will be adjusted in the recruitment roster against the appropriate category i.e., SC/ST/ OBC/General, depending upon the category to which he/she belongs.

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