SSB should not have interview system: ACAUT

DIMAPUR, JUN 17 (NPN) | Publish Date: 6/17/2020 1:15:34 PM IST

Following the announcement of setting up the Staff Selection Board (SSB) in the state within one month, the ACAUT Nagaland Wednesday suggested that SSB should have no interview system, but should only conduct written examination for the purpose of selection of candidates. 

In a press release, ACAUT chairman Tia Longchar and co-chairman Simon Kelio asserted that if SSB carried interview marks, it would “definitely go the NPSC way”, which they claimed continued to be plagued by allegations of favouritism and corruption.

They maintained that “this radical step of having no interview” was in line with the decision of Prime Minister Modi government, which had done away with interview for Group D, C and Group B non-gazetted posts in the central government since January 1, 2016.  Asserting that it been “a long fought battle”, the signatories, however, said that “finally wisdom prevailed” and gave credit to Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) and the state chief minister Neiphiu Rio for clinching the SSB deal.

They said that the “saga of this historic watershed” goes back to 2015 when ACAUT had first raised the issue with the TR Zeliang government. “It was during the height of the backdoor appointment agitation led by ACAUT that it was realised that unless there is a SSB to oversee the selection of all the non-gazetted posts in the state, Nagaland faced a herculean tasks to combat backdoor appointments,” the signatories said. They said that ACAUT on June 26, 2015 first submitted a memorandum to the then chief secretary, Pankaj Kumar, for setting up of a SSB to conduct exams for those posts that fell below NPSC pay-band criteria. “Since then there has been no looking back,” they added.

Along the way, the signatories said civil aspirant body under the name PSAN also took up the issue with the government in 2016. 

Thereafter, they said ACAUT and PSAN under the banner of PCC jointly staged a hunger strike in front of the Secretariat, Kohima, on three major issues—setting up of Lokayukta, SSB and the reduction of NPSC interview marks. They said the Zeliang cabinet at its meeting with ACAUT and PSAN representatives on November 17, 2017 accepted the formation of the Lokayukta and reduction of NPSC interview marks from 75 to 55. 

“Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of ACAUT and PSAN, the state assembly elections in early 2018 put a dampener on the next phase of agitation for the formation of SSB,” the signatories said.

However, they sad that the new NSF team led by federation president Ninoto Awomi “single-mindedly pursued the SSB agenda” and it has finally borne fruit after five long years.

Meanwhile, ACAUT sought to put on record that the credit for the formation of Lokayukta and the SSB, goes to the former chief minister TR Zeliang and the incumbent chief minister Neiphiu Rio respectively.


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