Thiruvananthapuram: The ongoing protests by youth seeking timely placement in the Kerala state service as per their eligibility under the Public service Commission rank lists have not apparently moved the Left Democratic Front Government.
The protesters blame the government for callousness and obduracy, whereas the ministers express their helplessness by asserting jobs can be provided only against vacancies. The other day state Tourism Minister Kadakampally Surendran upset the representatives of the rank-holders association with his forthright remarks.
Laya Rajesh, KK Raju and Dinesh Mohan, the three leading representatives of protesters, had arrived at the minister's official residence, Thycaud House, at 6:45 am on Monday to convey their grievances.
The trio waited in the queue like other visitors. And when their turn came, the Minister first enquired about the personal ranks of the three representatives as per the PSC list.
When Laya Rajesh told the Minister that she was ranked 583 in the Last-Grade Servant list for Thrissur district, pat came a retort from Kadakampally: "Even if the rank list is extended by 10 years, you will not get a job sister!"
To this, the rank holders said that they had not arrived for getting the validity period of the rank list extended but for demanding the filling up of the existing vacancies. Surendran then apprised them that the Chief Secretary had directed secretaries of the departments concerned to report the vacancies immediately.
The minister also said there were instances when the validity period of the rank list had got expired without even a single appointment to the government service from the list.
The minister also asked the rank holders as to why were they resorting to agitation against a government that has only done good things and was functioning so well.
'Shocked, felt very bad'
Meanwhile, Laya Rajesh was disappointed with Surendran's comments.
"I never expected such a reaction from the Minister. I was shocked. I felt very bad. I am not fighting for my own job," she remarked.
Surendran later clarified that he had only tried to convince the visitors about their prospects.
"The rank holders association representatives came to meet me without taking a formal appointment. I did not mistreat them. I just placed the facts before them. I did ask Laya Rajesh if she would get a job if the rank list was extended by 10 years?," the Minister stated.
"When I pointed to the rank lists from which not even a single appointment was made, there was no reaction from their side. I told them that they were playing into the hands of enemies and bringing bad name to a government which has done only good," he added.
Laya's PSC case
An assessment of the postings based on Laya's rank list suggests she still stands a chance to land a job unlike what the minister predicted.
Among Last-Grade Servant candidates from Thrissur district, Laya's rank is 583 and those up to ranks 418 have already got jobs. If 21 existing vacancies are filled up then Laya, who enjoys reservation benefits, would easily get a posting soon. Laya would definitely get the job along with others if 144 new appointments are made in the near future.
From the previous rank list, women belonging to her Layami community who were ranked up to 782 had got jobs in the state service.
A fortnight ago Laya was in the news for her emotional outburst during the rank-holders protests and the subsequent cyberattack on her by Leftists. Her photos showing her breaking down in front of media personnel during the protest before the Secretariat had garnered much attention.
Hundreds of Public Service Commission rank-holders in Kerala are agitating against the delay in government recruitments.