Govt Defers Shifting of Capital in J&K Over Covid-19 Surge

Civil Secretariat Srinagar | File Photo

Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday deferred the biannual darbar move to Srinagar saying that the civil secretariat, which is the seat of the Union Territory administration, shall function both in Srinagar and Jammu cities.

As part of the biannual darbar move and the civil secretariat's shift, other move offices and the Raj Bhavan were scheduled to close in Jammu on April 30 to May 1 and set to begin functioning in the summer capital from May 10.

The practice of darbar move - under which the administration functions in Jammu during six months of winter and in Srinagar during summer - was started by Maharaja Ranbir Singh in 1872 to escape extreme weather conditions in the two regions.

"In view of sharply rising cases of COVID in J&K, the government has taken few important decisions ensuring safety of employees. Darbar move deferred because of COVID. Secretariat to function in both #Srinagar & #Jammu. Office functioning not to be affected because of eOffice," Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha said in a series of tweets on Thursday.

Jammu and Kashmir had recorded 1,086 fresh COVID-19 cases on Wednesday taking the infection count to 1,41,736 while five deaths due to the virus raised the toll to 2,042 in the UT.

As Jammu and Kashmir is witnessing a surge in the number of COVID cases, the threat it poses to people and staff on the move and the implementation of eOffice software in both the secretariat and move offices, it has been decided to defer the darbar move this time, the LG said.

"However, Secretariat will function in both Srinagar & Jammu with staff equitably split between two Secretaries will function from both locations in an equitable manner", Sinha's office tweeted.

He said office functioning will not be affected as files will move electronically between both the secretariats through eOffice software.

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