Women helpline to give 200 jobs to Jammu, none to Valley

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Srinagar: There seems no end to alleged regional discrimination with Kashmir province even in the proposed establishment a countrywide 181 helpline for women.  Reasons? The government has decided to establish the proposed facility in Jammu city meaning that job opportunities will only benefit the winter capital and not Srinagar.

Conservative estimates suggest that the establishment of call center in Jammu will create over 200 job openings including those in the field of IT.

The Social Welfare Department has come up with a formal notification seeking proposal from private agencies for establishment of the call center in Jammu City.

Reads the notification: “The government of Jammu and Kashmir intends to establish a Women Helpline 181 (WHL) under the scheme launched by the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Govt of India. The Women Helpline will be designed to support women affected by violence both in private and public spaces and who are victims of physical, sexual, emotional, psychological and economic abuse. Women helpline is intended to provide 12 hours immediate and emergency response to the women affected by violence through referral (linking with appropriate authority such as police, one stop center service, legal aid and hospital) and information about women related government schemes, entitlements and programs across the country/state through a single uniform number.”

“The women Helpline will be established in Jammu City(Amphalla  area), will cover the whole of J&K and will be a single integrated helpline for women. The calls will be received from all the districts of the three regions of the state,” the notification added.

Technical experts, well-versed with such helpline facilities said it would provide around 150 call center executive jobs, apart from scope for IT professionals to be roped in. “See this 24X7 call center has to be run by the local resources in the form of call center executives, who will earn anything between 7,000 to 10,000 per month. The executives are supposed to be females. This way the facility will provide job opportunities to the local female folk,” said a technocrat asking not to be identified.

Elaborating, he said, the call center would also create job opportunities for the techies. “There will be job opportunities for database and network administrators as also for troubleshooters. But given the location of the proposed establishment, all the jobs will obviously for the people of Jammu,” the technocrat said.

Sources alleged that the Social Welfare Ministry took advantage of the ongoing unrest in Kashmir to “strategically benefit Jammu province.” “See people of Kashmir this time are stuck in humanitarian crises and don’t have time to look into issues of discrimination over prospective job openings. So government thought it was ideal to release the notification which will end up economically benefitting Jammu,” the insiders said.

Market pundits said over the past few years, there has been a continued discrimination with youth of Kashmir, who lost employment opportunities to Jammu province. “Initially there were some call centers of leading telecom service providers operational in Kashmir but subsequently all such facilities were shifted were to Jammu depriving local talent of their job share,” said a businessman.

When contacted the Kashmir Economic Alliance Chairman Muhammad Yasin Khan said the government decision to establish the 181 call center in Jammu was “another step forward in execution of RSS agenda in the state.” “But the biggest irony is that those who are helping Nagpur, happen to be Kashmiris who are part of the PDP-BJP alliance,” Khan lamented.

He however said the discrimination will be “fought back.” “Discrimination won’t be tolerated any further. Let the Social Welfare minister come clear on his intentions,” Khan said adding “Was it the appropriate time for the government to add to discrimination when it has already unleashed a bloodbath on the people of Kashmir?”

He said the matter would soon be discussed with other stake holders soon.

Despite repeated attempts the concerned officials were not available for comments

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