SRINAGAR: In a significant development, the Government of India (GoI) has classified Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh Union Territories as “hard areas” in the joint AGMUT cadre.
In a communiqué, the Ministry of Home Affairs has informed all states and UTs- who are part of the AGMUT cadre- that J&K and Ladakh UTs have been categorized as hard areas in joint AGMUT cadre.
“Consequent upon the merger of J&K cadre in AGMUT cadre, the matter has been examined and with the approval of the competent authority, it has been decided that Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and Union Territory of Ladakh may be considered as hard areas in joint AGMUT cadre,” reads the letter.
As per guidelines governing transfer and postings of AGMUT cadre IAS, IPS and IFS officers, the states and UTs are classified into categories- regular areas and hard areas.
As per categorization done by MHA, Delhi, Chandigarh, Goa, Pudducherry, Darda Nagar Haveli and Daman & Diu are regular areas while Arunchal Pradesh, Mizoram, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh have been classified as hard areas.
It is worthwhile to mention that J&K had its own separate cadre for IAS, IPS and IFS before abrogation of Article 370. In January 2020, the Centre promulgated an ordinance to merge the Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) cadre of All India Services officers such as the IAS, IPS and the Indian Forest Service (IFoS) with the Arunachal Pradesh, Goa, Mizoram and Union Territory (AGMUT) cadre—(KNO)