Week After Pulwama Attack, Home Ministry Approves Free Air Travel For Paramilitary Forces In Jammu & Kashmir
The Logical Indian Crew Jammu and Kashmir
February 22nd, 2019 / 6:14 PM
Image Credit: NDTV
In the aftermath of the dastardly Pulwama attack that killed about 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) jawans, the government has announced that jawans who would want to ply to and from Kashmir for official duty will now be entitled to take commercial flights for free.
The Ministry of Home Affairs issued a notice on February 21 which said that the ministry has “approved the entitlement of air travel on Delhi-Srinagar, Srinagar-Delhi, Jammu-Srinagar and Srinagar-Jammu sectors to all the personnel of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs),” reports The Indian Express.
The Ministry of Home Affairs has approved the entitlement of air travel on Delhi-Srinagar, Srinagar-Delhi, Jammu-Srinagar and Srinagar-Jammu sectors to all the personnel of Central Armed Paramilitary Forces.
— गृहमंत्री कार्यालय, HMO India (@HMOIndia) February 21, 2019
This includes them travelling to join duty, transfer, tour or going on leave. However, they clarified that convoy movement would still continue. With adequate security measures, personnel and logistics would still be travelling with convoys.
Aftermath of Pulwama attack
After the horrific attack, questions were raised as to why were the jawans made to travel on road and why was air travel not granted to them. The Home Ministry said that about 7,80,000 Central Armed Paramilitary Forces (CAPF) in the ranks of constable, a head constable and ASI who were otherwise not eligible earlier would be benefitted with the move.
Till now, this air travel facility was only available to officers in the rank of Inspectors and above. A senior official from the Ministry said all CAPF personnel will now be able to book tickets on regular commercial flights and claim reimbursement from their organisation or force for travel to and from Kashmir.
The home ministry further clarified that this new facility is “in addition” to the existing air courier services. Accordingly, entire aircraft is booked for the security personnel from either Delhi or Jammu to Srinagar and back fo CAPF jawans.
The MHA further said that this move will save the travel time of the jawans as well. “The number of flights were further extended in Dec 2018. In addition, air support is provided from IAF as and when required,” it said.
Written by : Poorbita Bagchi
Edited by : Sromona Bhattacharyya