‘ARE WE FIGHTING FOR OURSELVES OR GOVT'; Now police officers register protest on WhatsApp

Denounce department directive on deduction of 1-day salary, Demand Rs 1 crore welfare fund for each family of ‘police martyr’

ABID BASHIR
Srinagar, Publish Date: Jun 19 2017 2:10AM | Updated Date: Jun 19 2017 2:51AM
‘ARE WE FIGHTING FOR OURSELVES OR GOVT';  Now police officers register protest on WhatsAppFile Photo

Senior police officers deployed in Kashmir took to social networking messenger WhatsApp on Sunday to register their protest against the decision of the department to deduct one-day salary of every police personnel for “martyrs’ families.”

The officers maintained in one voice that “donations are meant for mosques and temples, not martyrs.”

The disgruntled policemen came down heavily on the State government for taking “police martyrs for granted” and demanded Rs one crore welfare fund for each family of the policemen killed on duty.

The open resentment by the police officers holding crucial positions comes just a day after J&K Police Department announced that one day salary of every police man will be deducted for the families of policemen killed during duty. 

According to the decision, the money would be deposited in the current month and will be credited into Range PHQ J&K account number, 0110010100004910, maintained at the J&K Bank extension counter PHQ. 

The decision was taken in the wake of killing of six policemen including an officer in a deadly militant attack at Achabal area of South Kashmir’s Anantnag district. However, the move has evoked total opposition from the police officers. 

Greater Kashmir accessed the conversation of police officers on a WhatsApp group. “Why deduct our salary? Why should not the government give at least Rs one crore to each family? Are we fighting for ourselves or government? Our men give blood, face bullets and stones. Now we should give money too,” a senior police officer wrote in one of the WhatApp groups, in a sarcastic tone.

Another officer of a rank of Sub Divisional Police officer (SDPO) wrote if anyone’s salary needs to be deducted it should be the ministers, the legislators, the judges, and all government employees except police.

“Aren’t we giving sacrifices for these people?” asked the officer. 

One of the juniors to him responded with this line: “You are absolutely right sir.”

Another officer in an apparent reference to ministers and other politicians, stated: “It is not army only giving sacrifices, we are also on same line and more involved than army, even our families are harassed. Centre and State government should play their role.”

A senior police officer in his comment stated that in fact donations are meant for mosques and temples not for the “martyrs.” 

“Martyr lays his life for state and state should be duty bound to honour his family by supporting him. One day salary is not an issue but the point is no one except us is bothered. Be it government or political bosses. We die and pay from our own pockets,” the officer wrote in the WhatsApp group created by senior police officers of Kashmir region.

His colleague responded quickly. “No not that, we have professional hazard being killed while on duty as doctors have like getting rabies. But ex-gratia by government is very minimum, if somebody attains martyrdom (sic).”

Some police officers were very blunt in the group. “Not that I am not willing to donate. Take a month’s salary, what is welfare section doing? Why do we need to go with begging bowl for our martyrs?” an officer wrote in the group. 

He got a quick response by his fellow colleague: “Since ages, we have developed a mentality of yes boss, even at the cost of genuine rights/demands. Time has come to change the strategy.”

A police official, who is also part of the messenger group, said that its time to bring some change in the system. “Police is the only department perhaps, where there is no union. We too have rights, issues and concerns, but there is no forum to rake them up,” he said, wishing no to be named. 

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