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As Admin ‘Substitutes’ Urdu for Revenue Dept Posts, People of Ladakh Fume
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As Admin ‘Substitutes’ Urdu for Revenue Dept Posts, People of Ladakh Fume

Earlier the Ladakh administration distributed tablets among the students and those tablets included every other subject but Urdu.


SRINAGAR — The Jammu and Kashmir administration’s decision to substitute ‘graduation with knowledge of Urdu’ with ‘graduation from a recognised university’ as the basic eligibility criteria for the posts of Naib Tehsildar and Patwari in the Revenue Department has drawn severe criticism from across the Ladakh Division.

Politicians, activists, and former officials have expressed their resentment over the decision and said, “they condemn it in unequivocal terms”. They said that the decision reeks of a conspiracy to deprive the youth of Ladakh of job opportunities.

Sajjad Kargili, a local political activist said that the revenue records of the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir, of which Ladakh was a province, are in the Urdu language. Earlier people with either graduation in Urdu or considerable knowledge of the language would be eligible to apply for the posts, he said.

“As the knowledge of mathematics is a must for engineering, likewise knowledge of Urdu is a must for Naib tehsildar and Patwari posts as all the records and technicalities are written in Urdu only.”

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Terming the administration’s notification as unfortunate, he said that they cannot call Urdu an alien language or sideline it as it is a “national language” and has been part of the Indian Constitution since the very beginning.

Mohammad Hassan Khan, a former employee of the revenue department in Ladakh said that all the records of the revenue department are written in Urdu, since the last settlement.

“If Urdu is being substituted in basic criteria and the criteria is being kept general, then all the records need to be translated to the other languages, which is a futile and time-consuming process.” Khan retired as the Deputy Commissioner.

“If anyone aspires to apply for a job in Computer Engineering, even if he holds a master’s degree in any other subject or for that matter is a PhD, without having the basic required knowledge he cannot fit into the position and therefore cannot apply for the job,” Asghar Ali Karbalai, a prominent voice of Ladakh and former Member of the Legislative Assembly of the erstwhile Jammu and Kashmir State said.

He said that the Urdu language and the records of the revenue department have been there for centuries even before the Dogra rule. “If the revenue records need any improvement or up-dation, basic knowledge of Urdu language is a must.”

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Karbalie said that these things have been decided without giving thought and the Ladakh administration and Home Ministry must clear all the “chaos and confusion”.

“We are hopeful that the Union Home Ministry and the administration of Ladakh will give it a thought and review the decision,” he added.

Recalling another incident, Kargili said that earlier the administration distributed Tablets among the students and those Tablets included every other subject but Urdu. 

“Seventy percent of the population of Ladakh is familiar with Urdu, and they know the language well,” he said. “People without the basic knowledge of the job cannot do justice with the job.”

Kargili said: “We smell a conspiracy in it to deprive our youth of job opportunities.”

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