Meagre Risk Allowance for JKP

It goes without saying that in combating terrorism and related violence and other issues , Jammu Kashmir Police has not only shown its mettle and professional acumen but its personnel have been even offering supreme sacrifice in operations in Jammu and Kashmir . It has been in the forefront and shoulder to shoulder with other forces in critical assignments like conducting searches, recovering cache of arms and ammunition, engaging and combating operations against militants in the UT. Just two days back , in a successful operation by the JK Police, the CRPF and the Army preceded by alert and prompt information about some terrorists armed to the teeth proceeding towards Srinagar by a truck hiding in its cavity , who were asked to stop near Nagrota , Jammu but were fired upon . Thereafter, the forces killed all the four terrorists suspected to be belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammed in the truck itself thus averting series of possible violent attacks by these men had they been successful in giving a slip to the Police. One Police jawan sustained injuries in the encounter. Having said all this, let us look at the other side concerning the personnel of our UT Police Force in terms of how they were paid for undertaking risks associated with the concerned assignments in the UT.
Why should there be no uniformity in payment of risk and hardship allowances to Jammu and Kashmir Police force as is being paid to their counterparts from other forces as the risk and associated threats and perils are the same faced by all the personnel. Had there been a nominal anomaly , it could have been taken in the stride but the rate and amount of this allowance reportedly being meagre calls for its review and reconsideration by the UT Government. The payment of risk and hardship allowances should be commensurate with the nature of the “difficult” places of deployment confronted with challenges like counter insurgency, counter terrorism and high altitude being increasingly manifest. We have, however, come to know the extent of this ”meagreness ” that a person of the rank of an Inspector is drawing just Rs.175 per month as risk allowance while 10 per cent of his basic salary being paid as hardship allowance. This hardship allowance is uniformly in rate and percentage for all ranks in the JK Police force. It was also known that other forces exposed to the same levels of risks and challenges as the JK Police were being paid these allowances at the rate of up to 34 per cent.
Let us not compare the rate of such allowances being paid to the Army personnel who not only are deployed at inhospitable , inaccessible and most challenging areas in the country especially in Northern and North Eastern areas in terms of hostile weather conditions , altitude, the extent of exposure to grave challenges etc but the fact remains and we know for the last over three decades , conditions created in Jammu and Kashmir, especially in the valley of Kashmir by Pakistani sponsored terrorism and infiltration , Jammu and Kashmir Police has been shouldering the responsibilities of various assignments along with other forces and shown very satisfactory performance . While it is their duty to come up to the expectations of the Government and the people of the UT, which they have undauntedly been doing , the Government too must feel conscious of commitment towards looking after their and their families’ welfare and interest like removing the anomalies in payment of Risk and Hardship allowances. Jammu and Kashmir being directly facing two belligerent neighbours – Pakistan and China, has to be looked at from that perspective and the security forces , the JK Police and the Army need better and preferred attention from the Government in terms of risk factors like insurance etc and payment of special allowances etc.