Interviews for certain categories of government jobs have been abolished in 23 states and 8 Union Territories to eliminate the scope of allegations of nepotism or corruption, Union Minister Jitendra Singh said on Monday. He said discontinuation of interviews has proved to be in larger public interest and it also seeks to offer a level playing field for candidates coming from lower socio-economic strata.
"It also eliminates the scope of allegations of nepotism or corruption in appointments to government jobs," said Singh, the Minister of State for Personnel. He said the call for abolition of interview was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day address from the ramparts of the Red Fort in 2015 and the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) promptly completed the entire exercise to issue orders abolishing interviews for all Group-B (Non Gazetted) and Group-C posts in the central government from 1st January 2016.
However, some of the state governments had initial reservations, but Singh said, he was glad to note that after continuous reasoning by the DoPT, most of the state and UT governments have seen the logic in this decision and finally decided to implement it. Even in Jammu & Kashmir, where the government had initially not introduced this rule, now after the taking over of the Lieutenant Governor regime, orders have been issued to make selection to these posts purely on the basis of the merit in the written test, Singh said.
Exchanging updates with the newly appointed Secretary DoPT, Deepak Khandekar, who called on him soon after assuming charge of the office on Monday at North Block, Singh said, one of the responsibilities of the DoPT is also to persuade the different state and UT governments to implement the path-breaking reforms initiated by the Union Ministry. Wishing Khandekar a fruitful tenure as Secretary DoPT, the minister expressed hope that the process of introducing one path-breaking reform after the other will continue under the new secretary.
He said some of such reforms which could never have been imagined till a few years ago, were possible for DoPT to introduce because of the support and personal intervention of Prime Minister Modi. Referring to some of the other landmark reforms "which will change the face of governance in India", Singh mentioned the constituting of the National Recruitment Agency (NRA) to conduct the Common Eligibility Test (CET) for appointment to jobs in different ministries and departments as well as the national programme for Civil Services Capacity Building called "Mission Karmayogi".
Similarly, Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) at Mussoorie had introduced common foundation course for civil service probationers under the name "Aarambh", he added.