Govt Revisits Dogra Certificate7 April 2011
Srinagar: In a bid to put an end to the ongoing controversy surrounding the issuance of ‘Dogra Certificate’ to the people of Jammu region, the state government Thursday issued a fresh order on the issue, asserting that the certificate shall be issued to the “candidates for the purpose of seeing employment in central paramilitary forces, wherever relaxation in height and chest measurement is permissible.” “This certificate shall not be valid for any other purpose and shall not form the basis of seeking any other benefit whatsoever,” the fresh order issued today by the Revenue Department said. PREVIOUS ORDER As per the Government Order No: Rev (LB) 69 of 2011 Dated 25-03-2011, Revenue Department had accorded sanction to the issuance of Dogra Certificate in favour of “all such residents of Jammu division who are otherwise eligible for grant of Permanent Resident Certificate (Procedure) Act and the rules made there-under.” “The concerned Tehsildar (Territorial) shall be competent to issue such certificate to the eligible desirous persons irrespective of his-her ethnicity, religion, cultural background and mother-tongue,” the order, copy of which is with Greater Kashmir, read. Contrary to the Minister for Revenue, Raman Bhalla’s claim that it was meant to facilitate recruitment of people of Jammu in Army, this government order doesn’t mention anything like that. The Army has already clarified that it had nothing to do with Dogra Certificate. FRESH ORDER In the wake of controversy over the issue, the state government this afternoon ‘amplified’ the previous order. “In amplification of the Government Order No: Rev (LB) 69 of 2011 Dated 25-03-2011, it is hereby clarified that the said certificate shall be issued to the candidates who are desirous of seeking employment and otherwise eligible for such employment in central paramilitary forces, wherever relaxation in height and chest measurements is permissible under the recruitment rules and (wherever) such a certificate is pre-requisite,” reads the fresh order No. Rev (LB) 82 of 2011 Dated: 7-04-2011. “It is also clarified that the above certificate issued by concerned Tehsildar (Territorial) shall specifically state the purpose ‘valid only for employment in central paramilitary forces’ and the following paragraphs shall form an integral part of such a certificate,” the order read. The paragraph, to be included with the certificate, reads: “This certificate is being issued to the candidate for the purpose of seeking employment in central paramilitary forces, wherever relaxation in height and chest measurement is permissible and where such a certificate is a pre-requisite. This certificate shall not be valid for any other purpose other than above notified recruitment purposes, and shall not form the basis of seeking any other benefit whatsoever.” Pertinently, political, civil society and legal circles had reacted sharply to the issuance of Dogra Certificate, arguing that “it was an attempt to divide the state on ethnic lines and dilute the sub-regional ethnicity.” On Wednesday, the Minister for Revenue Raman Bhalla had told a local news agency that it was “ready to issue similar certificates to Gujjars, Paharis, and Kashmiris”-something which was not taken in good taste by the civil society.