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Governor cancels insurance contract with Reliance group

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Guilty must be exposed & punished: Omar

Srinagar, Oct 25: Governor Satya Pal Malik has cancelled the state government's tie up with Reliance General Insurance for providing the group mediclaim health insurance policy to employees as there was "some bungling" in it.

The decision comes after the mandatory Reliance insurance for the state government employees and pensioners had sparked a row.

"The employees wanted it to be cancelled because there was some bungling in it. I saw the file and when I reached the conclusion that something is wrong in it, it did not take me a minute to axe it," Governor Malik told reporters on the sidelines of a function here Thursday.

The Governor refused to name anyone involved in the alleged malpractice but said "those involved will be punished".

Reacting to the development, former chief minister Omar Abdullah said the Governor should order an inquiry headed by Chief Secretary to establish who was behind allotment of insurance contract to the Reliance group.

"The Hon @jandkgovernor now needs to order an inquiry headed by the Chief Secretary to establish who was behind the allotment of the insurance contract. The sums of money involved are too big for this to have been a straight forward mistake," he tweeted.

Omar in another tweet said it was not enough to cancel the contract and the guilty should be exposed and punished.

"Fraud by whom? The guilty must be exposed & punished. Just cancelling the contract is not enough," he said.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi had earlier taken a jibe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for allegedly favouring Anil Ambani after the Jammu and Kashmir government gave the company the contract for executing the government employees mediclaim policy.

"When your BFF is the PM, you can get the 1,30,000 Cr. Rafale deal, even without relevant experience. But wait. There's more! Apparently, 4,00,000 JK Govt staff will also be arm twisted into buying health insurance ONLY from your company!," he had tweeted.

The Jammu and Kashmir government had on September 20 rolled out the group mediclaim health insurance policy for its employees, pensioners and accredited journalists of the state.

It had tied up with Reliance General Insurance for the mediclaim policy, which was made mandatory for the employees and pensioners.

'Perform or suffer': Governor Malik's message to bureaucrats

Srinagar, Oct 25 (PTI) "Perform or suffer" is the message of Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik for the state's bureaucrats and he says he has been directed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to build a "badhiya (wonderful) Kashmir" where corruption, inefficiency and sluggishness will not be tolerated.

During an interview with PTI recently, the Governor had outlined many schemes for generation of employment in the state. These ideas include roping in private players.

"When I started for Kashmir, the prime minister told me to give the people of the state a 'badhiya Kashmir'. Acting on these directions, I created a corporation immediately after taking over. It borrowed Rs 8,000 crore from banks for (completing) all the pending projects within one year," he said while answering questions on development.

Asked whether private companies will be brought into the state, the Governor said, "For that, we need to clear the perception about the Valley, especially Srinagar.

"There are teething problems, including land and labour, but above all this, there is another issue which bothers me a lot. For setting an industry in the state, it takes four years to get requisite clearances. A section of bureaucracy is sluggish and they will have to pull up their socks," he said, adding "it is clear that they have to perform or suffer".

The Governor said, "The message to the bureaucracy is that corruption, inefficiency and sluggishness will not be tolerated as I am going to be very harsh with such people."

Besides this, officers from the Kashmir Administrative Services (KAS) and other state services will have to furnish their property details, which will be made available online like in the case of All India Services officers.

The Governor said he has initiated a programme under which he would host an investment summit in Jammu and it may be followed later in Srinagar.

"We need to revive tourism because its revival will help other sectors such as handlooms, handicrafts etc," he said.

The Governor said that his priorities included the cleaning of the Dal Lake and to ensure that 2014-like floods do not reoccur.

"I have been made to understand that the Wullur Lake is full of weeds and because of it, no water from the Jehlum flows into it. So, we will soon start an ambitious project of cleaning the lake first so that Srinagar is saved from floods in the future.

"Besides this, I have directed that the Dal Lake should be cleaned in next six months and its area should be clearly demarcated. I am sure I will be able to do this," the Governor said.

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