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Engagement of teachers in FSL lab, J&K Govt says it has rights to make temporary arrangements

Last Updated on May 14, 2021 at 7:46 pm

Administration has engaged teachers to hold important portfolios in Jammu and Kashmir Forensic Science Laboratory. Many people have pointed out that it is a highly specialized task and it must be handled by those who have been trained by National Institute of Criminology and Forensic Science.

Critics say that the government has made a joke of Forensic Science Laboratory which has a very important job in administration of justice. Any other state or Union Territory has never taken any similar decision or is at least never heard of doing so.

The Directorate of Forensic Science Laboratory ran an advertisement on November 5, 2020, with the approval of the Home Department. They invited applications from in-service Masters of the School Education Department for 28 posts of Assistant Scientific Officers in Jammu and Srinagar labs on deputation basis for two years.

Commissioner Secretary to the Government, General Administration Department has sanctioned deputation of 10 Masters/Teachers of the School Education Department in the Forensic Science Laboratory for a time period of one year. These teachers will have to retain their lien, seniority and promotional prospects in their parent department.

A majority of these Masters/Teachers are presently posted in Government High Schools, Middle Schools and Primary Schools. Now, they have been given the job to handle the specialized assignment as Laboratory Assistant and Assistant Scientific Officer in Jammu and Srinagar Forensic Science Laboratories.

Meanwhile in an official statement released on Friday evening, Home Department has clarified that fresh recruitment is going on but given the disruption caused by the pandemic, it may take time and adds that this temporary arrangement is not by engaging unqualified staff but those selected have the requisite qualifications and are otherwise eligible to apply for fresh recruitment notice also.

It further says, the Government is well within its rights to make temporary arrangements and these persons have not been taken randomly but have been selected through a careful process. In fact, they are better placed than freshly recruited candidates since they have hands-on experience of lab work in the schools.

The FSL analysis depends on their theoretical knowledge and practical experience – they do not lack either. Out of the 10 selected persons, 1 is for the ASO post while the rest 9 are for Lab Technician post. In both these ranks, there are a very large number of vacancies – only 6 ASOs are in position against sanctioned strength of 37, while in respect of Lab Technicians against 22 posts, none is in position. In particular, Lab Technician is a 100% promotion post and there is unlikelihood of it being filled up soon due to non-availability of eligible candidates in FSL. The posts were advertised in November/December 2020 to invite applications – 27 candidates applied for the posts of Lab Technicians, out of which 9 have been selected while for Assistant Scientific Officer, 11 persons applied out of which one person has been selected, it says.