Government on Tuesday initiated a slew of measures for the benefit of refugees from West Pakistan settled in Jammu and Kashmir, including a directive to central armed paramilitary forces (CAPF) for recruiting them. Home Minister Rajnath Singh requested Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar also to take similar step so that West Pakistan Refugees (WPR) are recruited in the armed forces.”The Home Minister has approved certain concessions for the WPRs settled in Jammu and Kashmir after considering the problems being faced by them. He has directed the heads of CAPF that such WPRs from Jammu and Kashmir, who are Indian citizens and have valid voter IDs, be considered for recruitment in the forces, including the special recruitment drives conducted in the state,” an official statement said.The CAPFs are CRPF, BSF, CISF, ITBP, SSB, NSG and Assam Rifles.As of now, WPRs face difficulty to fulfil documentary evidence of residency in support of their applications as the CAPFs recruitment rules seek furnishing of Domicile Certificate (DC) from the candidates while the state government issues only voter ID with Non-Permanent Residency (NPR) status to such Indian nationals.In his letter to the Defence Minister, Singh said similar concessions, like waiving off the condition of producing DC and other identity certificate, may be permitted in the recruitment to the armed forces. The Home Minister has also written a letter to Jammu and Kashmir government requesting it to resume issuing the DC to WPRs settled in the state so as to enable such people avail equal employment opportunities.On the directions of the Home Minister, instructions have also been issued to the Department of School Education in the Ministry of Human Resource Development to accommodate the children of such WPRs for admission to the Kendriya Vidyalayas in the state.Similar instructions have also been issued to the Department of Higher Education in the HRD Ministry to extend those concessions available to the wards of Kashmiri migrants to the wards of WPRs of the state for admission to technical and professional institutes outside the state, the statement said.Around 5,764 families consisting of 47,215 persons migrated from West Pakistan and got settled in different areas of Jammu, Kathua and Rajouri districts. However, they are not permanent residents of the state in terms of J&K constitution.
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