JKSSB to hold deferred exams soon: LG

Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir Services Selection Board (JKSSB) will conduct the deferred computer-based written tests (CBT) soon, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said on Wednesday, reiterating that transparent and merit-based selection is the top most priority of his administration.

He also welcomed the Rs 1.18 lakh crore budget announced by the Centre for Jammu and Kashmir and said this will help the ”new J&K” to reach new heights of development.

Talking to reporters after inaugurating the Chancellor’s Trophy at the Jammu University here, Sinha said he stood by his statement that terrorists and their family members were provided jobs by previous governments.

”The examination (to fill vacancies in various government departments) has been deferred for the time being and will be conducted soon when the JKSSB will be completely satisfied (with the situation),” the lieutenant governor said, responding to a question about the deferment of CBT, scheduled to be held from March 16 to April 5, by the government recruitment agency amid protests by job aspirants.

The job aspirants are on a protest over the past several days demanding cancellation of the contract with previously blacklisted company APTECH, technical investigation into exams conducted by the company and a strong law against those involved in paper leak scams.

”I have time and again stated that transparency and merit-based selection of candidates is our priority. We will not make any compromise on it,” Sinha said.

Asked about Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) president Mehbooba Mufti’s criticism of his statement that previous governments provided jobs to terrorists and their families, Sinha said he stood by his statement which is based on truth.

”I will not like to comment on some allegations. This is a reality that 47 people were dismissed from government service for anti-national activities. What I have said is based on reality,” he said.

Mehbooba on Tuesday hit back at Sinha over his remarks that previous governments in Jammu and Kashmir provided jobs to terrorists and their families, saying this “is not our tradition” but giving employment to “hooligans” might have been a custom in Uttar Pradesh.

”LG sahab has come from Uttar Pradesh and was probably speaking about his experience there. There might have been a tradition to provide jobs to mafia and hooligans in Uttar Pradesh but that is not our tradition,” she had said.

The lieutenant governor said the budget for Jammu and Kashmir for 2023-24, presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament on Monday, was praiseworthy.

”The budget should be looked into in totality. We have made our plan for holistic development with focus on all major sectors. The budget is commendable and it will help to take new J&K, the foundation of which was laid earlier, to new heights of development,” he said.

He said 70 per cent of the population of Jammu and Kashmir is connected with agriculture and allied sectors and during the next five years, additional budget allocation of Rs 5,013 crore will be infused in this sector. “Security is a priority and so are other focus areas such as tourism, youth empowerment and education.” Earlier addressing the gathering, the lieutenant governor called upon higher education institutions to promote sports as a core subject.

”It is a powerful medium to ensure physical-emotional health, enhances learning efficiency and helps in character building,” he said.

He said sports nurture both mind and body and enables students to become well-rounded across disciplines.

“National Education Policy has given us an opportunity to promote sports through a multidisciplinary system and end fragmentation in the education system,” he said.

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