PATIALA: The Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC) has decided to allow a civil services aspirant up to four attempts to clear the entrance exam though it is still unsure about the periodicity of con ducting the exam.
Terming the PPSC’s indecision a “poor joke”, aspirants said this time the exam was being conducted after 11 years, forcing many to forego a chance to join the state services.
The PPSC on Monday began selling brochures and application forms for the coming combined exam to fill 143 posts of PCS officer, DSP and allied cadres. The format of the exam is stated to be on the lines of the one conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).
The Punjab Government was contemplating conducting the PCS exam every year on the pattern of the UPSC that recruits IAS, IPS and allied cadre officer through the civil services exam, but sources said the proposal hasn’t worked out.
A PPSC official agreed it was a farce to fix the number of attempts when the commission was not sure when the next exam would be held. He said the regulation was passed on to the PPSC by the Punjab Government.
The PPSC regulation said, “Unless covered by any of the exceptions, which may from time to time be notified by the government in this behalf, every candidate appearing for the examination after the commencement of these rules, shall be permitted to avail four attempts at the examination.”
An engineering graduate waiting to take the PCS exam since 2001, said: “When aspirants find it difficult to appear for one attempt, this regulation is a poor joke on those keen on serving Punjab. The gaps between two tests are so long that candidates become overage.”
The upper age limit for taking the PCS and allied cadres exam is 35 years, while for DSPs it is 28 years.
Aspirants have also been crying foul about the exemption given to ex-servicemen for appearing in subject papers. “When seats are already reserved for ex-servicemen, why this additional benefit,” asked an aspirant. .
The aspirants also argued that the PCS exam being conducted on the pattern and syllabus of the UPSC exam would benefit those who failed to make the cut in the UPSC exam.
“The syllabus for the PPSC exam does not have a local angle. It has simply been picked up from the UPSC,” an aspirant said.