SRINAGAR: At a time when the Jammu and Kashmir government is facing a dearth of administration officers, a number of the state cadre officers who are serving outside the state have refused to return, Kashmir Reader has learnt.
Sources said that the state government has been lobbying the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) since a long time for return of its service cadre officers who are on deputation in New Delhi, but most of them have gone on leave.
“The state (of J&K) is right now in a deep crisis. It has attempted to seek the help of the PM office to get more officers in the state, but senior officers on central deputation are not keen to return,” source in the civil secretariat said.
“In February, the state government cleared the proposal of return of four officers to the state and released an equal number of officers for central deputation. Among the officers who were cleared was Shantmanu, presently posted as Chief Electoral Officer, but his replacement is yet to arrive,” the sources told Reader.
The state has 106 vacant posts of top officers, nearly 45 of which are of IAS officers. “The state should be run by 137 officers, 75 of whom are direct IAS officers while 62 are inducted into the IAS cadre. It has only 83. A number of officers are already on central deputation, while many have refused to join. This means when an officer attains superannuation, another officer is assigned multiple charges,” a top IAS officer told Kashmir Reader.
“I have been in the secretariat for many years now. I have served outside as well. During this service period I have seen that the reluctance among the top officers to join the state has increased. Reasons may be multiple, but I don’t want to jump to conclusions. Each person has a different story,” the IAS officer added.
At present, as per the general administration website, Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, additional secretary by designation, is holding additional charge of MD, JK Tourism Development Corporation, and of Director Information.