Fri. Jun 2nd, 2023

Raipur: Amidst a row over alleged nepotism in the Chhattisgarh Public Service Commission (PSC) 2021 exam final selection list, a state-level organization of 1,000 CGPSC aspirants has decided to revive its four-year-old demand for massive reforms in PSC examinations. The Pariksharthi Chhatra Sangharsh Samiti’s petition for bringing transparency in the PSC is already pending a hearing in the state high court.
The PSC exam and selection list released a couple of days ago, has sparked controversy after many aspirants and opposition parties took to social media, pointing out that sons, daughters, and sons-in-law of bureaucrats and politicians found their positions at the top of the selection list as deputy collectors. The opposition BJP also went public, pointing out that the surnames of some candidates were deliberately concealed in the list so that they could not be identified as kith and kin of government officers.
As the opposition BJP leaders raised the issue of alleged nepotism, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel defended the PSC selections, asking, “Is it a crime if relatives of government officers and politicians get selected in PSC exams? I am also aware that such candidates got selected during the previous BJP regime, but I am not disclosing their names,” he defended.
The CGPSC released an advertisement for 171 vacancies in various departments of the state government and subsequently conducted the prelim examination on February 13, 2021. However, 2,565 candidates were declared eligible for the written examination conducted from May 26 to 29, 2022. Only 509 candidates were selected for the interview conducted from September 20 to 30, 2022. The CGPSC declared the results of 170 candidates who were found eligible in the final list on May 11, 2023.
“We are planning to raise our four-year-old demand for reforms in the CGPSC and hope to garner support from outside. When we started our campaign in 2019 against the CGPSC after exposing irregularities in the examination system and staged dharna and gherao, we hardly found any support. Now we can see the issue being raised by a major political party alleging irregularities in the selection process. We are preparing an action plan to fight against the CGPSC’s faulty examination system,” Samiti members, who had appeared for the examination but could not clear it, told TOI.
Like the National Testing Agency (NTA) and Chhattisgarh Professional Examination Board (CGPEC), the CGPSC should provide a scorecard, response sheet, cutoff, and carbon copy of the OMR sheet, make videography of the examination, and make provision to cancel the examination if more than five questions are found to be dissolved in any CGPSC examination to ensure transparency in the selection process, demanded the Samiti. The CGPSC should also release the examination calendar every year and stick to it, said the Samiti.
The Samiti members said that loopholes were present in the CGPSC’s examination system, but the way it is being exposed today is a matter of serious concern. Earlier, the CGPSC used to release model answer sheets and invite claims/objections and release an amended answer sheet before announcing the final results. Similarly, the CGPSC has been avoiding responding to the RTI applications submitted by the aspirants. But an amendment to Rule 56.13 of the CGPSC Recruitment Act 2014, made on April 19, 2021, snatched the rights from the candidates to have an amended answer sheet before the declaration of results, providing more room for the CGPSC to commit irregularities, said a CGPSC aspirant who did not want to be named. The Samiti described the amendment as unconstitutional.
The CGPSC aspirants said that they have filed a petition in the Chhattisgarh High Court seeking its intervention for reform in the examination process, and the matter is pending.
Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) Chhattisgarh will gherao the CGPSC office in Raipur on the aforementioned issue on Friday.
BJP Vice President and former Chief Minister Raman Singh, State BJP President Arun Sao, and other party leaders took to social media, alleging corruption and nepotism in the selection list. Other BJP leaders maintained that the PSC chairman’s son was among those who figured in the list, but only his first name was mentioned and his surname was concealed.
Chhattisgarh PSC’s tryst with controversies is not new. In September 2006, the then PSC chairman Ashok Darbadi, IPS, was sacked as PSC chairman by the then Governor KM Seth following protests from student organizations over alleged irregularities in the PSC.

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Tanushree K

By Tanushree


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