Hemant defends JPSC in Assembly, Rs 2,926 cr supplementary budget passed
Chief minister Hemant Soren defended the conduct of civil services examinations by Jharkhand Public Service Commission (JPSC) in the Assembly on Monday, coming out in support of JPSC that has been facing severe criticism from aspirants backed by the Oppositon alleging anomalies in the results of the preliminary test published last month.
Hemant said there was nothing wrong with the examinations and accused the BJP of orchestrating protests on the streets using Vishwa Hindu Parishad cadres. Accusing the Opposition party of not being able to come to terms with the fact that scores of adivasis and moolvasis would get a chance to enroll themselves for good jobs, he said, “They (BJP) are feeling a stomach ache because they failed to conduct exams during their five-year stint. We have held the exam in such a large scale to provide employment that it can’t digest it.”
Several JPSC aspirants are have been on an indefinite protest in Ranchi to demand cancellation of the exams. They met Jharkhand governor Ramesh Bais on a couple of occasions, alleging anomalies in the preliminary test results of seventh to 10the civil service exams.
The Opposition BJP has also met Bais seperately, demanding a CBI probe or an inquiry by a sitting judge to look into the alleged anomalies. The clamour for cancelling the exams has grown louder now with JPSC recently disqualifying 49 candidates, citing "missing OMR sheets" after declaring them successfull (pass) in the results.
On Monday, as proceedings of the third day of the winter session of the Assembly began, the BJP moved a work adjournment motion on the JPSC row. Speaker Rabindra Nath Mahto, however, opened the floor of the House for pre-scheduled business. Amid the din, the chief minister stood up to speak on the issue around 12.30 pm.
He said, “The BJP has fielded Vishwa Hindu Parishad cadres in the name of JPSC protestors and is helping them with backdoor logistics. As far as JPSC exams are concerned, the examination conducting body is an independent entity, and the government does not intend to interfere. Interfering in independent bodies is in the nature of the BJP.
"Irregularities in JPSC used to happen when the BJP was in power in most of the years since the formation of Jharkhand in 2000. Many past JPSC officials are either in jail or are facing probe only due to the BJP. In the last five years, the BJP’s double engine government was running without a bogey! Hence, it failed to provide stable jobs and appoint aspirants. We are carrying the baggage of its past mistakes."
Responding to the chief minister's statement outside the House, former BJP chief minister Babulal Marandi said the government was hell-bent on destroying future of thousands of job aspirants. “The CM’s clean chit to JPSC makes no sense when JPSC itself has exposed itself by first passing 49 candidates without OMR sheets and then disqualifying them when protests began. Let an independent probe take place to unearth further wrongdoings," the Dhanwar MLA said.
The House was adjourned for lunch around 1pm. After it reconvened at 2pm, a supplementary budget of Rs 2,926.12 crore was passed without debate as BJP legislators boycotted the proceedings. The supplementary budget has allocated Rs 620 crore for paying pensions, Rs 588 crore for the energy department, Rs 518 crore for the health department, among others.