AMARAVATI: December 6, 2020 marks the occasion of the 58th Annual Rising Day of the Home Guard and Defence Organisation in the country. In this context the Home Guards in the State of Andhra Pradesh have every reason to be happy as the State Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy has kept his promise made to them during his Praja Sankalpa Yatra.
At the beginning of his tenure he implemented the promise of hiking their salaries, including them in the insurance coverage which provides health and life insurance for the staff. While there are about 12,000 home guards in the erstwhile united Andhra Pradesh, their numbers have increased after the bifurcation of the state and at present there are about 16,650 home guards in AP. They are serving in the police department as well as other ancillary departments like the fire department, jails, temples, FCI, Television, Visakhapatnam steel plant and other State and Central government agencies. Representatives of the Home Guard Welfare Unions met YS Jagan Mohan Reddy in several districts during his padayatra and spoke about the issue of pay hike and gave several representations. YS Jagan promised to raise their wages and as soon as he assumed office, he took the decision to increase their salaries at the first Cabinet Meeting itselfmuch to their joy. Their salary was enhanced to Rs 21,300 and the Government also took measures to provide insurance to an amount of Rs 30 Lakh in case of death of a home guard or any accident. The Government also ensured that the insurance amount of Rs 40 Lakh to be given in case of a home guard died due to a terrorist or Maoist attack.
Home Guards’ is a voluntary force, first raised in India in December 1946, to assist the police in controlling civil disturbance and communal riots. Subsequently, the concept of the voluntary citizen’s force was adopted by several States. In the wake of Chinese aggression in 1962, the Centre on December 6th advised the States and Union Territories to merge their existing voluntary organisation into one uniform voluntary force known as Home Guards.The role of Home Guards is to serve as an auxiliary Force to the Police in maintenance of internal security situations, help the community in any kind of emergency such as an air-raid, fire, cyclone, earthquake, epidemic etc.