- Discussions in the meeting
- MY opinion on this Rumor-Bomb
Yet another UPSC bomb hits the rumor market.
I’m copy pasting an article from Times of India- Don’t panic while reading it.
Starting the Copy Paste
UPSC convened a meeting on 10-04-2012 and sought suggestions to change the pattern for civil services examinations.
- Director general (DG) of National Academy of Direct Taxes (NADT), which trains Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officers
- Representatives from National Police Academy, Hyderabad which trains IPS officers
- Representatives from Lal Bahadur National Academy of Administration, which trains IAS officers.
- Heads of various bureaucrat training academies wanted a cut in the age limit for entering the country's premier government services.
- The general suggestion was to reduce the age of candidates entering the civil services. An upper age limit of 26 was thought to be enough, as people do not take up employment before that age, said NADT DG DS Saxena who was present in meeting.
- The idea is to ensure that it is the first job for all those entering the civil services, as such candidates can be more enthusiastic and disciplined. The current upper age limit is 30 years, and higher for reserved category.
- There were also suggestions to prefer candidates without prior job experience, especially in government sector, as well as unmarried persons – because the married have their own problems. (lolz)
- Although meeting participants agreed that there could be no official bar on work-ex / married people from appearing in the exam.
- At present, majority of those joining the service have already worked somewhere earlier. They often tend to have an attitudinal problem, which hampers their training. Freshers are easy to mould, said Saxena, adding that the NADT too was of similar opinion.
- The gathering also mooted reduction of the time lag for clearing the civil services exam.
- Right Now, after advertisements inviting applications are published in January or February, prelims are conducted in May-June, followed by mains in November and finally the interview by April.
- The current period is over a year, which often deprives many brilliant but economically backward candidates from taking the exam. (Totally agree on this one.)
- It is easy to evaluate prelim papers, in which questions are of objective nature, but valuating papers for mains is time consuming. So if mains papers have a considerable section of objective questions, unlike a totally descriptive format now, the evaluation can be faster, said Saxena, citing a suggestion.
- This will reduce the gap between two examinations. So, with reduced age limit on one hand and quicker results, candidates will have to take exams at shorter intervals. This is also expected to help filter out candidates who otherwise may not have the natural ability but crack tests due to repeated attempts.
- Another key suggestion was to increase time slot for interview to at least an hour-and-a-half from 25 minutes at present, as it may help in judging the person's character properly.
Government departments want new bureaucrats to be young, unmarried and preferably without job experience to infuse young blood into the system. Those involved in training the babus feel that candidates with prior job experience are often hard to mould.
Ending the Copy-Paste.
- First and foremost: there is no need to panic after reading above article of Times of India, because most of those suggestions are unlikely to be implemented.
- No matter what UPSC chairman, his coterie, coaching thugs of delhi or orkut trolls say, There will no change in Age or Attempt Limit, in the near future.
- Constitution says that UPSC is independent and autonomous body. Government cannot remove the UPSC chairman or members as per its whims.
- So, if UPSC chairman is so ‘reformist’ why hasn’t he implemented these suggestions already?
- Because UPSC is independent for conducting the exam. But not for deciding minimum eligibility. UPSC is a recruiting agency, not a personnel agency.
- Consider this case:
- After you complete a 2 years course in IMA Dehradun, you get appointed as an officer in the Army.
- But to get admission in IMA, you’ve appear in Combined Defense service exam (CDS)
- CDS exam is conducted by UPSC. But there is a rule: “only unmarried males can apply for IMA” + Very strict physical checkup: height, chest-expansion, eye-sight etc.
- Million dollar Question: Did UPSC chairman alone made the rule about marital status or physical fitness for IMA admission? No he didn’t.
- Ministry of Defense sends a file to UPSC: “We want 100 gentlemen for IMA,Dehradun. They must be unmarried, must have high physical fitness, sharp mind, general awareness, decision making skills and good command over English language. You conduct the exam and send us the merit list before end of this year.”
- And UPSC conducts the CDS exam accordingly. You pay, service conditions and minimum eligibility is decided by the concerned personnel departments, and not by UPSC alone. UPSC has to consult the concerned ministries before initiating a major change in any recruitment exam.
- Since 2007, I had been hearing rumor every year that “UPSC will remove optional subjects from preliminary exam, and introduce an aptitude paper because various Committees formed by Government and UPSC have been recommending for this”
- It did not happen in 2008, not in 2009, not in 2010 but finally in 2011, and that too only after Mohan cleared the file.
- Recall the news reports that appeared before the introduction of “CSAT” in 2011: UPSC had sent the proposal file of ‘change in exam pattern’ to ministry of personnel. After PM signed on the file, CSAT was implemented.
But Why did PM Sign the file?
- Because Ministry of Personnel falls under domain of PM. Of course there is a “minister of state” to handle minor matters and day to day affairs of personnel ministry, but major decisions are taken by PM himself.
- Age, attempt, marital status or work-ex criteria are to be decided by the Government. UPSC can only send reform-proposal to the Government. If PM clears the proposal, only then UPSC can go ahead and implement it.
- But we all know, that no Government has the guts to reduce age or attempt limit, because it’ll have severe vote-bank implications, particularly in the Gangetic plains.
- At most what can happen in short term future: UPSC may increase the length of interview to half hour, UPSC may implement few objective questions in mains exam. If you’re a serious and hardworking player, such minor changes shouldn’t bother you at all.
- After Every two months, UPSC bomb hits the rumor market. Some rumors are exaggeration of newspaper reports. Some rumors are totally baseless and fictional stories. There are three types of players in this rumor-market.
|Player||What’ll he say||What is his agenda|
|Coaching thug||Yes UPSC is likely to introduce these things in 2-3 years. So time is running out for you!||
|Orkut trolls||Yes UPSC is going to introduce these things from next year.||
|“Guys check this out: UPSC is gonna change the exam-rules! I got the news from my friend, orkut, Delhi or newspaper. What are we gonna do now??||
In short, rumor mongering is part of UPSC game. But how should you handle it? Before answering that question, allow me to digress from the main subject of this article.
- Once upon a time our society was extremely orthodox: child marriage was permitted but widow remarriage wasn’t permitted. So a widow had to ‘pay’ for her past mistake of getting married in childhood, despite the fact that child-marriage wasn’t her own decision.
- Now consider following
To become an officer in Army, Navy or Airforce, you’ve to pass CDS or NDA exam but
- They give extra marks for NCC certificates;
- They reject you for slightest falling in medical checkup, even if you’ve decent score in written exam.
- Army: a candidate with more than +3.5D eye-glass number is not eligible.
- Navy and Airforce: candidate must not have eye-glasses of any number.
- + Laser eye surgery not allowed.
To get admission in IIMs, you’ve to pass CAT Exam but
- apart from CAT score, most of them have special admission rating system:
- You get marks according to your score in 10th and 12th board exams.
- If you’re a non-engineer or female, you get extra-marks.
- So you’ll find people with 99 percentile in CAT, not getting interview calls from IIM-Ahmedabad, because of these things.
Some people don’t get selected due to above rules, they file PIL in high courts and supreme court. Cases go on for years, nothing comes in their favor.
Your opinion on above rules of Army or IIMs will depend on which boat you’re sailing into. So, I’m not interested in discussing the pros and cons of such policies, what I’m trying to say is……
These people are basically ‘widows’. They’ve to pay for their past mistake: being born in a family where height DNA is low, having eye-glasses, getting admission in a state education board where no one gets above 80%, getting admission an engineering college, not doing extra-curricular activities and so on…. Even if it wasn’t their own conscious decision, they’ve to pay for it.
If you’re unlucky, A day might come, when you’ll become a ‘widow’ for UPSC. When, where and how exactly, nobody knows, nobody can predict. Only an official UPSC notification, press release or RTI reply can confirm or deny such rumors. But UPSC too gets sadistic pleasure, by keeping things uncertain and not dispelling the rumors by giving official press release. And there is nothing you can do about it.
- When will UPSC remove optional subjects from mains exam or
- When will Sachin retire?
There is no exact answer to these questions.
So, Study hard and have backup plans ready. Don’t panic after every article that comes in newspaper or every rumor that spreads from coaching factories of Delhi or bogus communities of Orkut.
Do your best and Leave the rest in the hands of God.