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Kerala oppn stalls assembly over recruitment scam
THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, Dec 21 (Agencies):
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Published on 21 Dec. 2010 11:41 PM IST
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The 8-day year-end session of the Assembly got off to a tumultuous start here on Tuesday with the Opposition United Democratic Front (UDF) members stalling the proceedings demanding removal of Revenue Minister K. P. Rajendran from the Cabinet and a judicial inquiry to unravel all aspects of the government job recruitment racket.
The Opposition moved into the well during zero hour shouting slogans making it impossible for Speaker K. Radhakrishnan to continue with the legislative and other business slated for the day.
Once his appeals for calm failed to elicit any response from the Opposition members, the Speaker rushed through the procedures for referring the Kerala University of Health and Allied Sciences Bill and the Kerala Agricultural Workers (Amendment) Bill to the Subject Committees concerned and declared sitting closed by 10.20 a.m.
The Opposition bid was to secure adjournment of the proceedings for a discussion on the subject, but the government took the position that it had done all that was necessary to unearth the scam and was in the process of sending the guilty to prison.
The issue had figured in the House earlier during question and Chief Minister V. S. Achuthanandan, therefore, refused to go into the specifics of the racket.
Although Leader of the Opposition, Oommen Chandy tried to navigate the issue beyond the recruitment racket and bring in a discussion on what he termed the recruitment spree being attempted by the government, particularly to the nine new public sector enterprises, neither the Chief Minister nor anyone from the government was ready to respond to his attempt.
Earlier, seeking leave for the adjournment motion, Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan (Congress) said the recruitment racket could not have worked so easily without of the connivance of bigwigs in the Revenue Department.
He also alleged that the issue was much larger given large number of persons who had gained jobs in the state service through the backdoor.
Some of those who had secured jobs were close relatives of persons working for ministers and ruling party MLAs. Besides, the Revenue Department, the Finance, Panchayat and Police departments too had connived in the recruitment scam in various ways, he alleged and wanted a judicial probe to bring to book all those involved in such postings.
Going one step further, the Opposition Leader said that the replies given by Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan during question hour which clearly showed that there was also a police verification racket at work in the State.
From what the Home Minister had stated, persons who had gained employment through the backdoor had also presented bogus verification certificates. This made the issue all the more serious, he said.
The Home Minister clarified that the forgery had taken place as part of the racket and the person concerned had been suspended from service. There was no question of the government shielding anyone and the racket will be handled in all seriousness,
Balakrishnan said, but the Opposition was insistent that the government was trying to cover up a lot.
As many as 1,919 persons were being recruited to the 9 new PSUs and posts were being filled in universities to beat the deadline for takeover of university appointments by the PSC, Chandy said.

 
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