‘Non-Eligible’ Bank Jobs, Delayed Results Trigger Shutdown in Ladakh

Almost a year after New Delhi abrogated Article 370 and bifurcated Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories, rage and resentment came from Ladakh against the job policies.

ON FRIDAY, life got crippled in the cold desert, cut from the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir last summer, after Ladakhi youth observed a complete shutdown against their “non-eligibility” in the bank jobs.

The shutdown was observed nearly a year after the abrogation of Article 370 and bifurcation of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories—Jammu Kashmir, and Ladakh.

Ever since Ladakh became a new union territory of India, the protesting youth said they have been getting anxious about their job security.

Friday’s shutdown was against the “non-eligibility” of Ladakhi youth in Jammu and Kashmir Bank Recruitment for Probationary Officer, Banking Associates and delaying in result of District Service Selection Recruitment Board Kargil.

The shutdown call was given by All India Kargil Ladakh Students Union (AIKLSU) and supported by various religious organizations, political parties, Trade and Transport Unions.

Talking to Kashmir Observer, one of the executive members of the students union said youth of Ladakh couldn’t take the official apathy towards their careers anymore, and were forced to resort to the shutdown.

“We had applied for jobs in J&K Bank but we were shocked to know that we are not eligible,” Mohammad Hussnain, executive member of students association told Kashmir Observer.

On July 8, Hussnain, a J&K Bank aspirant, received an email from the J&K Bank reading: ‘Dear Candidate, kindly, note that as per the notification, candidates of UT of Ladakh are not eligible for this recruitment process including those who have already applied from Ladakh District’s. Hence ignore the email/sms communication inadvertently sent for editing the details. We regret inconvenience caused. The Jammu and Kashmir Bank. Ltd.’

Hassan Minji, another aspirant, told Kashmir Observer that many youth who had applied for jobs in the bank are disappointed to learn about their “non-eligibility” criteria.

“There’s a lot of unemployment in both the districts [Leh and Kargil], and it’s unfortunate that the youth are made to suffer,” Minji said.

Minji appealed to authorities to make the youth eligible for the bank jobs and declare the results of District Service Selection Recruitment Board (DSSRB) Kargil as soon as possible.

According to a statement, the Kargil students association contacted the Chairman DSSRB /Deputy Commissioner Kargil regarding delay in declaring results for different posts.

The examination for the said posts, notably, was held nine months back.

“Despite assuring us many times, Deputy Commissioner Kargil/ Chairman DSSRB is yet to declare the results,” the statement reads.

Besides early declaration of DSSRB results and eligibility of Ladakhi Students in recent J&K Bank recruitment, the students demand job security for local youth, separate Public Service Commission for Ladakh, reservation of seats for Ladakhi students in professional colleges of Jammu and Kashmir and other states and establishment of full-fledged Ladakh University.

On the call of Ladakh Students Educational and Environmental Action Forum, a complete shutdown was also observed in Leh against J&K Bank recruitment.

Demanding equal stake for Ladakhis in the assets of the erstwhile state of J&K, Feroz Khan, Chairman/CEC LAHDC Kargil, said the advertisement of the 1850 posts in the J&K Bank exclusively for domiciles of J&K has not gone down well with the Ladakhis.

Khan said he has taken up the matter with the UT Ladakh Administration twice as well as with the Chairman J&K Bank.

“This is a grave issue,” Khan said. “UT Ladakh was formed to empower the people of Ladakh. However, nothing substantial has been done on the ground.”

J&K Bank in which Ladakhis have been reposing faith and money for so long has already excluded the youth from applying for jobs, Khan said.

“We demand that a good number of posts exclusively for Ladakhis are reserved by the J&K Bank,” he added.

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Auqib Javeed

Auqib Javeed is special correspondent with Kashmir Observer and tweets @AuqibJaveed

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