J&K: DDC members call off protest, will meet L-G Manoj Sinha on March 12

Jammu: The newly-elected members of the District Development Council (DDC) on Wednesday called off their protest in support of better status and monthly honorarium, after Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha’s assurance. They are now scheduled to meet Sinha on Friday.

The DDC members are protesting seeking cancellation of the warrant of precedence and honorarium scale set up by the Union Territory administration.

They reiterated that the future course of action will be decided after the meeting with the L-G on March 12.

On Tuesday, the newly-elected DDC members across party lines boycotted a two-day training programme and staged a protest in support of their demand forcing the L-G to cancel his inaugural session.

Many political parties including the BJP, the Congress, the CPI(M) and the Peoples’ Conference have came out in support of the agitating DDC members and urged L-G Sinha to ensure they have adequate powers to mobilise government departments and address public grievances.

The maiden DDC elections to 280 seats — 14 each in 20 districts — were held in November-December last year and the chairpersons and their deputies in all the 20 districts were elected last month.

The DDC members staged protest after the UT administration amended its warrant of precedence, placing the DDC chairpersons equivalent to administrative secretaries, vice chairpersons to vice-chancellors of universities and the DDC members to district magistrates.

As per the government order, the DDC chairpersons would get monthly honorarium of Rs 35,000 including Rs 1,500 travel allowance and Rs 500 telephone charges. Vice chairpersons will get Rs 25,000 including Rs 1,500 travel allowance and Rs 500 telephone charges and members will get Rs 15,000 including Rs 1,500 travel allowance and Rs 500 telephone charges.

(With inputs from PTI)


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