Genuine or a ploy?


The All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union (AAPSU) has been fighting for the welfare of the students for a long time. They demanded our scholarship when I was in college, whenever the scholarship was late to arrive. It is commendable that it stuck to its own ideals and has brought forward the concerns of the candidates who were selected in the exams conducted by APPSC. Thus, challenging the null and void demand put forward by the PJSC (Pan Joint Steering Committee) and the ANSU (All Nyishi Students’ Union). This is a genuine concern and needs further deliberation on. At the same time, it seems like the AAPSU has fumbled in their recent interactions with the mass media.

First, in a press briefing at the Arunachal Press Club by prominent AAPSU members, they said that if the Union Public Service Commission were to conduct the exam on behalf of the state public service commission, they would apply their quota system in the state, ie, only 7.5 percent of the posts would be for the people of our state. This statement turned out to be blatantly false.

Second, they have also demanded for exams to be conducted within six months. The reasoning given was that, even though the state government has recently increased the upper age limit to appear in state exams to 40, some candidates are in danger of crossing this age limit without getting their chance to appear for the exams. This is a valid concern for those people who are at that age. But won’t trying to conduct exam at the earliest date possible collide with the bigger picture in this case, ie, overhauling of the APPSC, setting up of proper SOPs in place and apprehending the people responsible for this scam?

Third, very apt and practical examples were given for the case against null and void. But the example of the Olympic Ggames has turned on its head. In an Olympic game, if one of the contestants is cheating, does that disqualify all other contestants and the competetion is declared to be invalid? No, right? This was a suitable example given by their member. But (this counter point was made by an anonymous person on WhatsApp) what if the referees or judges in the competition are cheating and actively trying to make some participants win? Then, does that mean the competition is invalid?

The AAPSU has some very valid points to offer. But trying to scare people by spreading misinformation about the ramifications of recommending to the UPSC to conduct the state public service exams and calling for fast-tracking of exams without solving the bigger issue at hand has not left a pleasant impression on the general public. The people of the state are aware of the age old ‘divide and rule’ policy. Only the AAPSU’s future course of action will determine if they are genuinely working for the betterment of our society or acting as a ploy to deviate attention from the issue at hand.

Kojeen Gyati