Govt Job Recruitments, promotions remains a tough task

Illustration by Rajiv Tiwari

Arijit Bose

Lucknow: The Yogi government is well known for the zero tolerance policy towards bad practices, however many are now asking that why is this policy not applicable to the issue of promotions and poor recruitment in  government jobs.

As Yogi Adityanath rode to power in Uttar Pradesh earlier this year, he set a target for 100 days in which he specified that over 10,000 government job aspirants will be placed in the first 100 days. While the government has completed 100 days in power, recruitments continue at a snail’s pace.

Things have not gone as per plan at times when the Yogi Adityanath government  had plans of executing promises made by the BJP in the Lok Kalyan Sankalp Patra issued regarding the assembly elections. CM Yogi planned to fill about 20 thousand vacant government posts and provide self-employment opportunities to more than 50 thousand unemployed people of the state.

If for India government jobs matter, Uttar Pradesh is no exception. A large number of aspirants appear for several exams conducted by the state and central governments. The reason behind the obsession for government jobs is the high unemployment rate in the country and job stability in government jobs.

For example the RRB exams kept getting delayed from 2019, until students agitated enmasse. By August 2021 the Tier-1 exam was conducted. Many aspirants feel the government’s interest is to lure the aspirants by releasing job notifications.

Unlike what was promised  only 3 lakh students were selected which led to protests across U.P. and Bihar. In the past few years voices of resentment have been heard from Banaras Hindu University, Allahabad, CGL Exam (Combined Graduate Level) of the Staff Selection Commission (SSC), among others.

Many of those like Shiv Kumar left their houses; took expenses like hostel rent, education fees, mess charges from parents. Ultimately many returned empty handed after preparing for five years for this exam.

For Kishore Kumar, who shares his name with a famous Hindi playback singer “the central government since Narendra Modi became the PM, has been stepping on the aspirations of the students. There are so many vacancies that they do not conduct exams for because they are bent towards privatisation.”

To add to the woes are government job exam paper leaks which have hampered career growth in a big way. Hashtags like #ModiRozgarDo, #SpeakUPForSSCRailwayStudents,  #StudentsLivesMatter became quite a common trend over the past few years. With over five million tweets, #ModiRozgarDo trended at No.1 on Twitter not so long back.

“It is now 2022. Even after clearing the exam, our recruitment has not happened.” said a youngster. Reportedly when exams were conducted on 3,500 vacancies, but even such a small number of vacancies remain to be filled. Many who appeared in 2016 for the exam have crossed the age limit to be recruited, which is 28 years.

Youth of UP. SSC, Railways and a dozen other state services exams have been embroiled in similar controversies in UP, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, and Rajasthan.

First the issue of entering the job. Even if the job is secured, the woes are not over. For some like Shivangi Sharma a Jaunpur district resident the job of a sweeper proved nightmarish. She lost her job while for two months she was not paid her dues.

Many like her took a loan only after getting the job and was sure she would settle the loan soon through the wages.

When things turned worse, 43 candidates wrote a dozen letters to different state officials for help. The cries however fell on deaf ears.

It is worth mentioning that the UP government claimed of providing jobs to 4.5 lakh youths in the last five years. In November 2021, CM Yogi Adityanath said that through a transparent recruitment process, the government gave over 4.5 lakh jobs to youths in UP.

It is however ironical that despite UP government’s claims, the unemployed youths have protested with the demand for recruitment in different state departments. Many facing the batons of police in harsh winters. Some took out a Berozgrar rally to protest against the government.

After 14 years, LDA has collected the details of vacant posts in various departments and sent them to the government. These posts will be recruited by the commission. About 125 posts will be filled. Posts from surveyor to babus are vacant.

In recent years media reports suggest that between 25-29 years of age, the unemployment rate has nearly doubled – from 8.8% to 15.9% – over the past four and a half years. Furthermore in agegroup of 20-24 years, joblessness has increased from 23.1% to 31.5% in the same period.

The state’s youths are highly irked with the current unemployment situation, paper leaks and notification of jobs getting delayed.

As per  CMIE’s Mahesh Vyas, who alone tracks the state of employment on monthly basis, wrote in a column on March 1, 2022. Talking about the state of unemployment in the quarter ended December 2021: “Interestingly, about 1 per cent of the unemployed said that their nature of occupation was that of a salaried employee. The urban salaried class now stands at 42.5 per cent of the workforce, compared to 41.7 per cent in 2011-12. The data for 2011-12 is from the National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO), under the Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation. The PLFS, launched by the National Statistical Office (NSO, under the same ministry), was first carried out in 2017-18.

Defence recruitments, like the Indian Railways, have traditionally been the biggest government job providers. However, in the last 6 years, the railways has done away with 72,000 positions.  While promotions remain a question mark in Uttar Pradesh, the Yogi government has decided to give promotion on the entries of five years instead of 10 years, removing the hurdle in promotion in government departments.

Along with this, three years promotion will not be given on major penalty and one year promotion will not be given on minor penalty. In the direction of withholding of pay increase, the concerned personnel will be kept separately in the first three selection years after the passing of the penal order. If there is no stipulated time period  in the sentence passed for the concerned personnel, the personnel concerned will be declared unfit for that number of selection years.

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