Make PRC mandatory for appearing in APPSC exams: ANSU

ITANAGAR, 18 Jun: The All Nyishi Students’ Union (ANSU) in a memorandum to the chief minister on Friday demanded that it should be made mandatory for the candidates appearing for the exams conducted by the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC) to produce their permanent residence certificates (PRC), in order to “safeguard the interests of the APST candidates and the state as well.”

Stating that not a single question related to Arunachal or Northeast India was asked both in the preliminary and the mains of the APPSCCE-2020, the union demanded that Arunachal-specific and regional topics be included in the syllabus.

The ANSU said that the APPSCCE-2020 witnessed six non-APST candidates clearing the examination, “thus making entry into the Arunachal Pradesh administrative structure.”

“The regional topics, ie, Arunachal Pradesh in specific and the Northeast India in general must be incorporated, weighing up to at least 30 percent of the total marks in each paper and in all the three stages of the examinations,” the union said.

“In the history of Arunachal Pradesh state civil services examinations, for the first time a non-APST candidate topped the examination. This is a matter of grave concern as this development has opened a floodgate for all the aspirants from the entire country to appear in the APPSCCE, thus threatening the interest of the APST candidates,” the memorandum said.

The union said that the fate of the state and the role of the APPSC “are directly interconnected as the civil servants recruited by the commission decide the destiny of the state.”

It further demanded setting up of a dedicated ‘appraisal and grievance redressal cell’ to address any examination-related grievances within 30 days.

“The existing setup is devoid of adequate grievance redressal mechanism, due to which various examination-related grievances are not sufficiently addressed on time, causing undue difficulties,” the union stated.

Its other demands include upholding the 1:3 ratio for viva voce; reviewing/revising the physical standard test and the physical efficiency test for Arunachal Pradesh Police service; relaxing the height requirement or making it at par with the UPSC standards (ie, 160 cms for male and 145 cms for female ST candidates); and putting in place a robust and transparent RTI framework.

The union said that the existing RTI mechanism divulges inadequate information. “The only information furnished by the APPSC through RTI are the marks statements and original unmarked answer scripts of the candidates, without providing the marks awarded for each question in each paper,” it said.

“The award sheet or the marked answer scripts containing marks allotted against each question in each paper must be made accessible to the candidates on request through RTI,” it added.

Regarding the criteria for appointing the chairman and members of the APPSC, the union said that the chairman must be a former/retired civil servant of Arunachal. On the other hand, it said that the members must have at least 10 years of experience under central or state government. “Moreover, the members must comprise at least one academician and one retired civil servant,” it said.

The ANSU has given the state government 25 days to fulfil its demands, failing which, it said, “strictly no new examination-related proceedings are to be initiated.”

It also sought “immediate official response” to the union’s previous demands placed through a representation dated 9 September, 2021.