'Extend validity of rank lists': PSC rank-holders stage protest at Secretariat

Thiruvananthapuram: The recruitments by the Kerala Public Service Commission came to a standstill last year owing to lockdowns announced to contain the COVID-19. As a result, several rank lists of candidates who had cleared the tests held earlier by the public recruiter are set to expire as they are time-bound. Several job-seekers have been staging protests of late seeking to extend the validity of PSC rank lists in which their names appear. On Friday, a large number of them protested at the Secretariat in the Kerala capital, seeking to extend the validity of the recruitment rank list by six months.

The rank lists for certain categories of jobs are set to expire in a few days as appointments were delayed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

An indefinite stir is on by several job-seekers who had made it to the LDC and Last Grade Servants rank lists.

The agitation by rank-holders for the post of light-duty vehicle driver (various Grade-II) will continue round the clock. It has now entered the second week.

The organisers of the agitation have threatened to launch strong protests if the validity was not extended during the next meet of the state Council of Ministers. The state committee of the Federation of Various PSC Rank Holders' Association is spearheading the candidates' protest.

Candidates in the assistant salesman (SupplyCo) rank-list would carry out a token stir at the Secretariat on Saturday.

The agitators want the government to resolve the issue at the earliest so that they don't contract the coronavirus while out protesting when the COVID-19 pandemic continues unabated in Kerala.

Other demands

Candidates in the LDC rank-list in various districts have been protesting since January 20. Apart from seeking the validity extension of rank lists, they have demanded a cap on the appointment of dependents of employees at 5 per cent.

Meanwhile, those in the Last-Grade Servants lists in various districts have been demanding that the university appointments too should be made from the current list.

School recruitment too

Candidates who made it to the higher-secondary junior rank-list too carried out a Secretariat march on Friday, raising demands such as the vacant posts at the government higher secondary schools should be filled from the current list. Hundreds of candidates, including women, took part in the protest march.

Rank-holders' association president Joby Johnny inaugurated the dharna, while Lisna, Saju and Pradeep Nair spoke at the meet.

Candidates alleged that junior vacancies have not been reported to the PSC even though senior teachers had retired in March 2019. Also, no steps have been initiated to carry out promotion to the vacancies created by retirement in 2020.

They further said that the chief minister's announcement on creating 1,000 posts in higher secondary schools and colleges as part of his government's 100-day action programme was restricted to the government-aided education sector alone.

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