Srinagar: In times of 7th pay commission wherein government employees enjoy the perks, thousands of Contingent Paid Workers (CPWs) in school education department are being paid a meager monthly salary— ranging from Rs 25 to Rs 500.
The majority of the CPWs have provided the land to the school education department.
As per the workers, the government had promised them a secure job in return of their land which they have provided to the school education department for establishing educational institutions.
One of the CPWs, Waheeda Begum said that despite providing land to the education department to get a sufficient amount and a secure job, “I am being paid a salary of Rupees 100 a month to work for 6-7 hours a day.”
Appointed in the year 1988, the widow and a mother of four, Begum has been serving the Government Middle School (GMS) Chakpath Laripora in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district for a meager amount of Rs 100 which compelled her elder daughter to quit studies in her 9th standard.
The 45-year-old Begum who works in the school as a sweeper for past 30 years while narrating her ordeal said, “My father had donated land of 9 Marlas of land to the education department who in return had promised of a decent salary by appointing any of our family members as a sweeper in the same school that was constructed in our land.”
“However, the department never adhered to their promises and kept on deceiving us by giving a meager amount as my salary,” she said.
Begum further said that her father late Mohammad Ramzan Bhat had also served the same school for many years and was also being paid an amount of Rs 10-25 a month.
Similarly, another land donor, 30-year-old Bilquis Akhter of Redwani area of south Kashmir’s Kulgam district said that she was appointed as sweeper eight years back and since then she is getting Rs 50 salary a month despite donating 4 Kanals of land.
Akhter said, “The Government Middle School (GMS) which is clubbed with another school in Hamdapora village of the district has been constructed on our land but most of CPWs like me have been victimized by the education department who is providing us Rs 50 salary a month.”
Likewise, Shabir Ah Bhat, of Badjehalan D K Marg area of south Kulgam district said that he has provided one Kanal of land in 2012.
“Since then, I have been receiving Rs 25 a month. The authorities even stopped providing that meager amount too since 2017,” Bhat said.
He said, “It seems that the school education department only took over our land to keep us unemployed and wanderers.”
Farooq Ahmad Bhat of Aishmuqam area in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district says that he has donated four Kanals of land in 2006.
“Since then I am getting Rs 25 a month as a salary,” he said.
Bhat believes that if he would have invested the land for apple production, he would have earned Lakhs of rupees annually.
“But on the promise of the school education department, I provided the land but unfortunately, I did not get any benefit out of it,” he said.
He said, “We had constructed one room in the land and the school education department has been paying Rs 150 as rent for it.”
State President Jammu and Kashmir Contingent Paid Workers and Cook Employees of the education department, Abdul Gani Malik said that there were nearly 10,500 workers in the education department.
Malik said, “All the CPWs in the department are being paid a meager salary ranging from Rs-25 to Rs 200. (KNO)