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1. Soldiers Sailors and Airmen Boards have been in existence in the Country since 1919, the British days.  The  organization was small in size upto  1947 and performed  functions  which included  rendering assistance  to the Ex-servicemen in completing the outstanding  pension cases, verification of matters relating to serving personnel and ex-servicemen referred  by the  Units  and Record Offices and distribution of medals to ex-service-men  who could not be issued  these during their service.  Since 1955, the organization has been revitalized and the scope of its functions considerably enlarged.

2. In October 1975, the organization was re-designated as the Sainik Board organization with the Kendriya Sainik Board (KSB) at the center, the RajyaSainik Board at state level. Subsequently in September 1984, the then Sainik Board Organization was re-designated as the Sainik Welfare Department.   


 3. The entire Sainik Welfare Organisation is working under the Ministry of Defence. The  Defence  Minister  is the  Chairman  of KendriyaSainik  Board  and  the Chief  Minister of the State  and service chiefs are  amongst its members. The policy decisions are taken in the annual meeting of   the Kendriya Sainik Board.

4.Each State has a Rajya Sainik Board (RSB) and a Directorate of Sainik Welfare.  In J&K, Hon’ble Lt  Governor is the President of J&K Rajya Sainik Board.  The Director Sainik Welfare is the head of the Sainik Welfare Department and is also Secretary Rajya Sainik board. The post of Director Sainik Welfare Department J&K Government is tenable by a retired Brigadier/Colonel and has been designated as Major Head of the Department. 

5. In J&K, the Sainik Welfare Department, in addition to the Directorate, has under its jurisdiction 13 Zila Sainik Welfare Offices (ZSWOs) at Jammu, R S Pura, Akhnoor, Samba, Kathua, Udhamnpur, Reasi, Doda, Poonch, Rajouri, Srinagar, Baramulla and Kupwara. A retired  officer of the rank  of Col/Lt Col is  re-employed  as  the  Zila Sainik welfare officer and  is  also  Secretary  Zila Sainik Board and has been designated as Class I Officer           

6. The Deputy Commissioner of the district is the president of the ZilaSainik Board. There  are  a few  ex-officio  members from  amongst the  officers  at  district headquarters and  retired   defence  personnel are  nominated  by the Deputy  Commissioner  as  non-official members.  

7. The Sainik   Welfare Department was declared as permanent Department of the State Government vide Government Order No. 15-JKM/110/64 dated 24-06-1964. For  administrative  control, it comes under  the Home  Department  of the  J&K Government. 


 Responsibilities of Department of Sainik Welfare / Rajya Sainik Boards

1. Control and co-ordinate work of ZSWOs in the State and ensure their effective functioning.

 2. Promoting measures for the welfare and resettlement of ESM and families of serving/deceased personnel of the Armed Forces.

 3. Disseminating information to the general public regarding Armed Forces in the country and for taking measures to enhance interest in Armed Forces amongst general public. 

4. Administering the ZilaSainik Welfare Offices (ZSWOs) in the State in accordance with the rules and instructions prescribed by the Central and State Govts including undertaking annual inspections. In coordination with the administration of the State, ensure that vacancies of ZSWO and their staff are filled on occurrence.

 5. Maintain upto date statistics of ESM, disabled ESM, widows, dependants and families of serving defence personnel under the heads pensioners and non pensioners both for ESM and widows.

 6. Seek and monitor employment opportunities for ESM and widows in the private sector. 

7. Assist ESM and widows in planning and funding of self-employment ventures.

 8. Organize Armed Forces Flag Day Fund (AFFDF) committee meetings in order to fix targets for various state and voluntary agencies to enhance collection drive throughout the year. Maintain the Amalgamated Special Fund and promote/ institute Welfare Schemes in the State from these funds as per decisions of the Management Committee of these funds.

 9. Undertake additional welfare measures for ESM and widows. Give wide publicity to welfare measures being undertaken by the Deptt through the media.  

10.Hold Ex-Servicemen rallies and pension adalats to propagate various concessions being extended and settle on the spot functional and other problems projected by Ex-Servicemen and their dependents.

 11.Organise annual  “RSB Meeting‟ under the Chairmanship of Governor/ Chief Minister and  “AFFD Fund Meeting” under Chairmanship of Governor of the J&K. At these meetings, a review is to be made of welfare and rehabilitation measures, fresh policies formulated and implemented.


Responsibilities of Zila Sainik Welfare Offices (ZSWOS) / Zila Sainik Boards (ZSBS)


1. Disseminate information to the general public regarding the Armed Forces and make constant Endeavour to promote and maintain a feeling of goodwill between civilian population, service personnel and ESM.

 2. Monitor welfare of families of servicemen and ESM in addition to assisting them in representing their cases with the local administration or the Defense authorities.

 3. Give information to the general public regarding conditions of service in the Armed Forces so as to assist intending candidates in approaching the appropriate recruiting authorities for purposes of enlistment.

 4. Scrutinise applications for relief from various military and civil charitable funds and make suitable recommendations.

 5. Grant financial relief to ESM and their dependents from funds at their disposal. Recommend cases of ESM and their families for financial assistance from KSB.

 6. Settlement of financial problems such as pension and other retirement/ release benefits/ dues to ESM; grants and assistance in kind to ESM beneficiaries and their dependents from the Central/ State Governments or other Organizations such as the Indian Red Cross Society etc.  

7. Maintain a close liaison with the pension disbursing authorities/ agencies in the District to ensure prompt and correct payment of pension and reliefs to ESM pensioners or their dependents.

 8. Assist families of serving personnel in regards to their safety/security and during absence away on duty of the serving personnel.  

9. Promote and maintain, under the guidance of the State Rajya Sainik Boards, welfare measures in the District such as Rest House for ESM. 

 10. Maintain liaison with other welfare organisations such as the Indian Red Cross Society, NGOs and voluntary agencies to enhance additional sources of welfare and concessions for Ex-Servicemen and their families/dependents in the Districts.

 11. Maintain an up-to-date register of war widows and, dependents of those disabled in action with a view to ensure their welfare and security. 

12. Assist ESM in forming and setting up co-operatives for their self-employment.  

13. Provide all resettlement assistance to war widows, dependents and war disabled as well as to those who died/disabled while in service due to attributable to service reasons.

 14. Organise Armed Forces Flag Day under aegis of the President ZSB (the District Collector) and facilitate Flag Day collections and implement authorised fund raising measures in the district.

 15. Organise rallies/re-union of Ex-Servicemen. Organise welfare meetings with President ZSB to resolve problems of Ex-Servicemen and widows, preferably once each month on a fixed day.