With the advent of New Year, the new policy of discontinuation of the interview process for junior level positions in central government jobs has also come into effect. Announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his national address through 'Mann ki Baat' programme in October 2015, the new policy is likely to affect nearly 18 Lakh aspirants who compete for Group D, C and Group B's non-gazetted posts in central government. The majority of junior level employees falling under Group B and Group C level positions are selected through the very popular SSC CGL (Combined Graduate Level) Exam. Besides this, Group-C and Group-D employees under the central government like LDC (Lower Divisional Clerk) and DEO (Data Entry Operator) are selected through SSC CHSL (Combined Higher Secondary Level) Exam.
Below, we shall try to evaluate, how the decision to scrap interview process for SSC Job Exams will impact and affect the SSC Exam pattern. Currently, SSC conducts written tests followed by personal interviews to select non-gazetted junior officers for central govt jobs.
One of the key reasons cited by the PM Narendra Modi behind introducing this policy was to end the rampant corruption that is prevalent in the SSC Jobs recruitment process. Many corruption cases have been highlighted by the aspirants, which has brought this issue to the light. In majority of the cases, the corruption was found during the interview phase, wherein senior officials and interviewing authorities asked for bribes in order to confirm placement of candidates. The scrapping of interview phase for the SSC Jobs will put an end to this menace.
Merit Based Transparent Selection Process
Another major advantage of discontinuing the interview phase for SSC CGL Exams would mean that selection or SSC Jobs would be done only on the basis of candidates’ performance in the written examination. Eradicating subjective factors which were evaluated in the interview phase will result in the selection of meritorious students for the central government jobs.
No Need of Recommendations
Prime Minister Modi had also raised the concern of widespread culture of recommendation in the selection of central government employees through SSC Exam under the existing interview-based selection process. He pointed out that babus conducting the interview for the final selection of candidates often preferred those who had recommendations from senior officials or relevant political connections. Having backing of a senior authority was considered as a mandatory requirement to be selected for SSC Jobs. With the end of interview phase, the ‘Sifarish’ culture will also come to an end.
Zero influence of middlemen in selection process
Under the current SSC selection process, middlemen played a very important role in the final selection of the candidates. These middlemen, who are well connected with senior officials and political netas would be ready to provide recommendations and make other arrangements for final selection of the candidate for a hefty amount of money. However, their influence would only be valid in the interview phase as written examination was conducted in open and transparent manner. Therefore, ending the interview phase would also mark and end to the ‘Dalal Raj’ in SSC selection process.
End of the corruption cycle
Candidates selected for SSC Jobs by paying a hefty bribe or a large sum for recommendation would be more interested in serving their own ends. Such government officials would be interested in recovering the money invested by indulging in corruption and other illegal activities. However, interview free, transparent and speedy recruitment procedure will select honest candidates that will be willing to serve the country, rather than their personal motives.
Speedy completion of the Recruitment Process
Despite the SSC CGL Exams being conducted on time, the final appointment of selected candidates could not be done because of the pending interview phase. The scrapping of interview process means the final appointment can be done by the commission directly on the basis of the merit obtained by the candidate. In other words, this move is likely to speed up the overall recruitment process for junior level employees through SSC Exams.
The above-mentioned factors clearly point out that discontinuation of the interview process for SSC Jobs is a step in the right direction. However, candidates will have to wait for the final exam pattern after exclusion of interview phase and evaluate its impact after the SSC CGL 2016 notification is announced by the commission.