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Fri, 27 Mar 2020

Northeast Today

Manipur High Court directs state to pay minimum Rs 18,689 monthly to home guards

Manipur High Court directs state to pay minimum Rs 18,689 monthly to home guards
January 24
09:48 2020

NET Bureau

In a significant judgment, the Manipur High Court has directed the state government to pay a minimum of Rs 18,689 per month to home guards within eight weeks.

The judgment order passed by justice MV Muralidaran single bench on Wednesday, also mentioned that the minimum of the pay should take effect from January 2020.

Although a Supreme Court judgment passed in 2015 had directed the state government to pay the duty allowance of home guards in equivalent to the minimum pay of the state police, the Home Guard personnel have been left deprived of it.

However, not in conformity with the apex court directive, the state government had passed an impugned order to enhance a pay of Rs 7,730 per month instead. Subsequently, the Manipur Home Guard Employees Welfare Association, challenging the order, approached the Manipur High Court.

The Wednesday order mentioned that the services of home guards are utilised in the Police department like the regular police force and they are also utilised as traffic police on the streets as well. It observed that the home guards are also utilised as security guards in all the offices, including civil/secretariat, chief minister, all minister’s office or others important bungalows of bureaucrats.

Therefore, their services are equal to that of police constables. Although, a total a sum of Rs 5,000 is being paid to them as duty allowances, it added.

Seeking implementation of the Supreme Court direction, the Home Guards association filed a writ petition before the Manipur High Court in 2015. Notably, the Home Affairs Ministry also wrote to all chief secretaries and administrators of Manipur to implement the Supreme Court direction in 2018.

In response to the letter, the deputy secretary, Home, filed an affidavit which stated that remuneration of the home guards has been revised to Rs 7,730 as contract employees. The state has been restricted for reimbursement of allowance pertaining to home guards maximum at a total of Rs 6,000 per month per guard, it said. The response further mentioned that the state is not in a position to pay the enhanced remuneration due to the financial conditions of the state.

However, the Home Ministry has stated that a minimum pay + grade pay + duty allowance + washing allowance, that is on scale 5200-20200+1900GP amounting to Rs 18,689 per month will be paid. The court fixed the sum as allowance payable to home guards in the state.

The court further observed that the state may consider increasing the strength of home guards, in proportion to the need besides giving them specialised training on par with police personnel.

It further directed that the state government must ensure to take steps for imparting training for under water rescue operations and after skill upgradation, home guards should be placed at fire stations as a part of auxiliary force.

Source: Imphal Free Press

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