The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday announced that it was doing away with 25,000 home guards as the state could not afford the new allowances the Supreme Court has asked it to pay, only to reverse it hours later, saying no one would be removed. Officials said a large number of home guards were taken on in April. The Supreme Court in July, however, meant a hike in the cost of deploying them. The daily allowance for the home guards is now Rs 672, up from the Rs 500 before the court order.
The government said this would have cost the state an extra expenditure of Rs 10 to Rs 12 crore every month. It, therefore, decided not to deploy home guards meant for security at police stations and traffic signals.
According to an order was issued by Additional Director General (ADG) BP Jogdand, "The decision not to deploy 25,000 home guards was taken on August 28 this year in a meeting chaired by the Uttar Pradesh chief secretary."
Uttar Pradesh Director General of Police OP Singh said this step has been taken due to the extra financial burden on the police department following the court order and it is a temporary one.
"After the Supreme Court order, the police department would have had to bear the extra burden of Rs 10 to Rs 12 crore per month. This decision of not giving postings is a temporary one, and if and when required they will be called for duty," the DGP said.
Later, the government said no one would be removed.
When asked Home Guard Minister Chetan Chauhan told PTI, "No home guard will be removed. I have talked to officers of the police department and asked them not to remove anyone. They might reduce their working days."
The home guards are not permanent employees and are recruited on a casual basis. They do not have any fixed monthly salary and are paid based on the number of days of duty.
Till now they have been expected to work for 25 days but the government decreased it to 15 days.
Earlier when asked about the matter, UP Chief Secretary RK Tiwari told reporters in Ayodhya, "Diwali will be celebrated in every household. We are mulling on how this problem can be resolved."