Ex-Army porters demand permanent jobs

Ex-Army porters speaking to media persons in Jammu on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Rakesh
Ex-Army porters speaking to media persons in Jammu on Wednesday. —Excelsior/Rakesh

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, July 15: Hundreds of Army porters, who were left “unemployed” after Kargil war, have appealed the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to absorb them in Army as they are at the verge of starvation.
“We were recruited as Army Civilian Porters after passing medical test and other formalities of the concerned authorities during Kargil War (Operation Vijay) in the year 1999-2002 to carry warlike stores and ammunition,” unemployed porters said while speaking to the media persons in Jammu today.
Rattan Singh, one of the Kargil War porters said that they served in most difficult terrain in Kargil area along with regular army troops and 7 porters (5 Dogras, one Ladakhi and one Nepali) were martyred in enemy fire and more than 20 wounded.
He said many of them were enrolled by the Army as civilians during two special recruitment rallies held for them at Tanda (Akhnoor) and Salaria Square (Udhampur) while rest were not considered for any recognition, resettlement or compensation despite various representations.
“Some of the porters who went to Court got Government jobs including ex-three porters appointed in 1 FOD Udhampur on March 8, 2017 while 279 Kargil porters are still waiting to be employed on the basis of J&K High Court verdict dated may 26, 2017, said Uttam Singh, another Kargil war porter.
He said that when BJP was part of Government in J&K, they made many representations but to no avail. He said that now we have written directly to PM Narendra Modi and hoped that PM will intervene and help them in getting employment on the basis of J&K High Court verdict.