Thiruvananthapuram: It was with deep bitterness that Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan told the opposition benches, who had accused his government of corruption, that they had been given a tight slap on their faces by the people. Vijayan was speaking during the Question Hour in the Assembly on Tuesday.
A reply to this was given right after, during the adjournment motion moved by Congress MLA Shafi Parambil seeking a discussion on the backdoor appointments of the government. Shafi spoke of the suicide of Anu, a youth who had secured a top rank in the PSC list for civil excise officer and still was unable to secure the job. "Can there be a more painful slap than the suicide of this young man," Shafi said.
He said Anu's family and his entire neighbourhood had celebrated his win in the PSC exam. "But the rank list was allowed to lapse because of the adamant attitude of certain people," Shafi said. "Finally, realising he would not get the job, Anu ended his life," Shafi added.
As was expected, Swapna Suresh, too, found a mention. "While someone like Swapna Suresh who no one is sure has cleared the SSLC has been recruited with a salary fatter than even elected representatives, a highly qualified MA graduate like Anu was given the noose," Shafi said.
The chief minister, while opposing a discussion on the issue, had said all PSC appointments were done by the PSC. "It is only in highly specialised areas, especially infrastructure and high-end technology, that skilled personnel were recruited outside the PSC."
Shafi, however, pointed out instances in Tourism and Labour departments, Kerala Institute of Labour Administration and Keltron where backdoor appointments were made bypassing the PSC.
In the case of Tourism Department, Shafi said the arbitrary appointments were objected to by both the Finance and Legal departments. "Yet, the Cabinet decided to overrule the objections of the Finance and Legal departments and conduct recruitment outside the PSC," Shafi said.
The recruitments to other departments were similarly conducted. "The KILA bylaw says that a lecturer should possess a PhD but this stipulation was thrown to the winds while appointing people close to the LDF government," Shafi said.
He said this government had created a graveyard of PSC rank lists.
The chief minister did not respond to any of these charges specifically, except to say that Shafi had not uttered a word against the BJP government that had effected a recruitment freeze.
Later, as further proof of the LDF's illegal appointments, Leader of Opposition Ramesh Chennithala produced a letter written to the government by Chalachithra Academy chairman and filmmaker Kamal recommending the regularisation of Left sympathisers in the Academy.