Srinagar, September 22: To strengthen the Jammu and Kashmir Police, particularly in view of the unrest in the Kashmir valley, the Centre today approved the recruitment of an additional 10,000 Special Police Officers (SPOs) with immediate effect. There are 25,000 SPOs in the state already.
The Centre had information suggesting that thousands of Kashmiri youths had opted for the job, despite a call by Hurriyat hardliner Syed Ali Shah Geelani to boycott recruitment rallies. It is also to be kept in mind that Hizbul Mujahideen had released videos three weeks in a row threatening the Kashmiri youth to not participate in the SPO recruitment as well but those calls have been defied as well.
The government issued a statement which read: “The additional SPOs will be utilised especially for security-related requirements. The reimbursement of expenditure to the state government by the Centre in respect of 10,000 SPOs will be as per the existing approved Security Related Expenditure (SRE) Guidelines.”
An SPO initially draws a salary of Rs 5,000 per month, Rs 5,300 on completion of one year and Rs 6,000 on completion of three years. The Centre is in the process of providing employment opportunities to 1.40 lakh youths in the state through various means, including skill development. Official sources said one lakh youths, mostly under-graduates, would be given job-oriented training under the Himayat scheme in the next five years.