194 computer operators engaged at the Community Information Centers across the state under centrally sponsored scheme face uncertain future as eight years after they were engaged, the state government has not regularized their services as per the provisions of the scheme. At least 58 of them have crossed the maximum age limit for entry into government service and hence rendered ineligible.
According to the project, Central government had launched 135 Community Information Centers of the state vide government order number 29-DITof 2004 dated 2-04-2004 and appointed computer operators in them on consolidated payment of rupees 5500 per month. These operators were expected to provide basic information and computer know how to rural people of state. It was also enshrined in the scheme that after funding the project for the fist five years, the project was later to be taken over by the state government, which it did vide order number of 25-ITD-2009 dated 30-3-2009. However, Operators who were appointed under the project have not been regularized even after putting in eight years of service.
Community Information Centre Association (CICA) president Shahid Israr said, "though in 2010, IT department enhanced our salaries from rupees 5500 to 8000 for diploma holders and 10000 for degree holders vide government order number 28ITDof 2010 dated 22-11-2010 but we were not absorbed in permanent government services".
"Many other state governments were similar scheme was launched have absorbed the operators into permanent service and even our state government has regularized services of ReTs and ReZs after initially appointing them on contractual basis, so why is step motherly treatment being extended to us?" he questioned.
Meanwhile, the information technology department of the state took a considered view in ruling that CICs have a definite role to play in ushering e-revolution in state and handling such GOI schemes in the state.
Ironically, information technology department in the state is being run only by five officers that include Commissioner Secretary to government, Additional Secretary, Under Secretary, CEO JaKeGA and System Executive and there is no organizational set up of the department beyond the civil secretariat.
While Speaking to Kashmir Images Minister Science and Technology Syed Aga Rohullah said, "CICs are treated as any other corporation employees of the state, however we have plans to create service rules for them", however their future is safe hand and CICs were later shifted under JaKeGA scheme.
Relying to query of employment generation in IT sector in state, "There is no scope for any government service; however we have created IT Park for booming of private sector in state to generate employment" he added