[ Nellie N Manpoong ]
ITANAGAR, Nov 21: Candidates who had appeared for the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Combined Competitive (Mains) Examination (APPSCCE) have filed an appeal in the Gauhati High Court against the 16 September, 2019 judgment of the court’s Itanagar permanent bench to conduct the APPSCCE afresh within eight weeks.
The date for admission of their appeal has been scheduled for 22 November.
In the event that the appeal is not accepted, the agitating candidates said they would file a contempt petition for the delay in conducting the examination even after the passing of the eight weeks’ time given by the HC’s Itanagar permanent bench in Naharlagun.
APPSC to adopt CSAT
While these developments were taking place, the APPSC amended its examination rules and adopted the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) for its preliminary examination, and issued a notification regarding the same on 19 November.
Accordingly, a few changes have also been introduced in the marks. The earlier paper of general studies, which had carried 150 marks, will now carry 200 marks. The optional (subject) paper, which has been replaced with the CSAT pattern, similar to the one followed by the Union Public Service Commission, will now carry 200 marks instead of 250 marks.
The interview marks have also been increased from 250 to 275.
However, the amendment does not specify whether it would be applicable to the candidates who had applied and appeared for the examination when it had been held for the first time on 26 November, 2017.
Apart from the appeal made by the candidates who appeared for the APPSCCE mains, the amendments in the examination rules have raised concern among some candidates that “the commission will very likely announce the examination dates by mid-December, and the dates are likely to be sometime in the second week of January 2020.”
Speaking on condition of anonymity, one of the candidates who cleared the last prelims said the matter should not be dragged any further and the exams should be conducted within a timeframe.
On whether the new rules would apply to the current candidates, a highly placed source in the APPSC said, “The matter was subjudice in court and the commission is also expected to file an appeal against the judgment of 16 September, as suggested by its standing counsel.”
Seeking to dispel apprehension among the candidates that the commission might announce the examination dates without warning, the source said, “Nothing will be announced all of a sudden because opportunity should be given to the candidates. We will always work for the interest of the aspirants and not as per our convenience. We are working tirelessly. We are currently engaged in conducting interviews for the posts of assistant professors, and then will conduct interviews for the posts of TGTs, which is expected to be completed by 20 December.”
The Itanagar bench of the HC had on 16 September directed that the APPSCCE (prelims and mains) be held afresh, strictly following the rules, guidelines and syllabus, within a period of eight weeks.
The first preliminary of the APPSCCE had been held on 26 November, 2017. The second preliminary was held on 29 July, 2018. The mains were held on 10 November, 2018, amid protests by candidates who had passed the prelims.