Srinagar: The decision of the Jammu and Kashmir government to give additional charge to Achal Sethi, holding the charge of secretary law & parliamentary affairs, despite being far junior in rank and status to three Muslim officers in law department Fayaz Ahmad Sheikh, Abdul Rashid Fayaz and Nazir Thakur, triggered massive anti-government protests inside the secretariat premises in Jammu.
Eyewitness said that employees of assembly secretariat for the fourth consecutive day on Monday staged massive protests against the government over its decision to give additional charge of secretary assembly to Achal Sethi, an officer junior to three Muslim officers in the law department.
The protesting employees demanded appointment of secretary assembly from within the assembly secretariat, where one Naseema is the senior most officer, who could take over from outgoing secretary assembly Ratan Lal Sharma, who retired on Monday December 31, 2018.
Top sources told Kashmir News Service (KNS) that the speaker of the dissolved assembly Nirmal Singh immediately after taking the charge early this year approved the appointment of Ratan Lal Sharma as secretary assembly but the confirmation of his promotion is awaited even the day of his retirement.
On the contrary Nirmal Singh, sources said blatantly refused to approve the promotion of additional secretary Naseema as special secretary for which she is overdue.
Now when on the day of the retirement of Ratan Lal Sharma, the government denied an opportunity to Naseema to take the charge as secretary assembly as the senior most officer of the assembly secretariat and gifted the additional charge of Secretary Assembly to Achal Sethi, an officer holding the substantive post of deputy secretary but looking after the charge of secretary law and parliamentary affairs.
It is in place to mention here that three Muslim officers far for senior to Achal Sethi Fayaz Ahmad Sheikh, Abdul Rashid Fayaz and Nazr Ahmad Thakur, two have been sidelined in the appointment of secretary assembly.
The charge of the Secretary assembly could have been given as additional charge even to Muzaffar Ahmad the incumbent Secretary Legislative Council as he holds the position of Special Secretary in the department of law and parliamentary affairs.