You have claimed that NRA is a great reform. What are the objectives the government intends to achieve through it?
Creation of NRA will be a big boost to transparency, which is the hallmark of Modi government. At present, aspirants have to take different exams that are conducted by various agencies for central government jobs and on an average 2.5 crore to 3 crore candidates appear for about 1.25 lakh vacancies in the central government every year. But from next year, NRA will conduct a common eligibility test (CET) and based on the CET score, one can apply for a vacancy with the respective agency.
NRA will have representatives from Railways, finance, financial services, SSC, RRB & IBPS. When did work on it begin?
Consultations and discussions started over one-and-a-half years ago and it was Prime Minister Narendra Modi who took the initiative with an intention to bail out students from the current cumbersome process. His clear direction was to make life simpler for millions of job aspirants, besides saving their time and resources. A series of governance reforms were undertaken under PM Modi. But NRA stands out as a unique model as it marks a paradigm shift in the government recruitment process. It’s also in tune with Modi government’s mantra of ‘Ease of Living for the Young Job Aspirants’ by simply facilitating ease of recruitment, selection and job placement.
Moreover, multiple recruitment examinations are a burden on the candidates, as also on the respective recruitment agencies, involving avoidable/ repetitive expenditure, law and order/ security related issues and venue related problems. Therefore, NRA in its true spirit is a combination of convenience and cost effectiveness for candidates.
NRA assures examination centres near candidates’ homes as per which each district will have at least one centre. Can you elaborate about how it will help job seekers?
Examination centres in every district of the country would greatly enhance access to the candidates located in far-flung areas. There will be special focus on creating examination infrastructure in the 117 aspirational districts, which will go a long way in affording access to candidates at a place nearer to where they reside. In one stroke, it will prove a great boon to crores of aspirants residing in hilly, rural and remote areas and most importantly the girl candidates facing plethora of problems. NRA also envisions conducting mock tests for rural youth and will have a 24×7 helpline and grievance redressal portal.
How will the CET process work?
The CET score of the candidate shall remain valid for a period of three years from the date of declaration of the result. The best of the valid scores shall be deemed to be the current score of the candidate and there would be no restriction on the number of attempts subject to the upper age limit.
Educational qualification has been the criterion for selection of the candidates. How will the CET decide selections as applicants will be from different educational qualifications?
NRA shall conduct a separate CET each for the three levels of graduate, higher secondary (12th pass) and the matriculate (10th pass) candidates for those non-technical posts to which recruitment is presently carried out by the Staff Selection Commission (SSC), the Railway Recruitment Boards (RRBs) and by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS). Based on the screening done at the CET score level, final selection for recruitment shall be made through separate specialised Tiers (II, III etc) of examination which shall be conducted by the respective recruitment agencies.
The CET will be conducted in 12 languages. Is there any plan to add more languages as some states have already raised the issue of why their language was left out?
Besides Hindi and English, tests will be conducted in 12 languages. But efforts will be made to include all the languages mentioned in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution.