CM Pema Khandu

Itanagar: The Arunachal Pradesh government has announced an increase in the upper age limit of APST (Arunachal Pradesh Scheduled Tribe) candidates from 37 to 40 years for the state civil services exam.

The announcement was made by Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Tuesday who said that the move will benefit all aspirants including those who have been deprived of a fair chance due to a few vested interest persons.

“It was our government that had increased the age limit for Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC) examinations from 35 to 37 for APSTs. Now we will increase it to 40 for the benefit of all the aspirants,” Khandu said.

Expressing shock and disgust over the recent paper leak scam in the APPSC, the state’s top recruiting body, Khandu said the state government is well-versed with the over-ageing concerns of aspirants and has decided to increase the age limit as it is not an aspirants fault.

He informed that the state public service commission is in process of a complete overhaul and soon a robust and stricter standard operating procedure (SoP) would be in place as is with the staff selection board.

The chief minister assured the people that his government will deal with all kinds of corruption with iron hands.

“I (chief minister) may not have the power to give employment but I still have the power to take it away,” he said.

Khandu also made a slew of other announcements in line with the 7th Central Pay Commission.

The chief minister said the dearness allowance (DA) and dearness relief (DA) of all regular state government employees would be enhanced by 4% which would see an increment in their DA/DR from 34% to 28% with the effect from 1st July 2022.

The state government employees will now receive a house rent allowance (HRA) at par with central government employees.

Khandu also announced that non-practicing allowance (NPA) will be paid to government doctors from now on, which was a long pending request of the doctor fraternity of the state.

He informed that in implementing all these announcements the state exchequer will have to bear the additional burden of Rs 172 crore per year but said his government is capable and ready to bear it.

“Our government is a performing government. In recent years we have more than doubled our revenue generation and Rs 172 crore is but a small amount to be spent on the welfare of our employees, who in fact are the backbone of the government,” he said.

Khandu, however, expressed expectation that the approximately 68000 state government employees would reciprocate positively and perform their duties with sincerity and diligence.

Attending the Vivekananda Kendra’s 50 years of service to the nation at D K Convention Centre here this evening, Khandu reiterated that the country and the state are in the right direction of progress under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

He said people of the state will always be indebted to Mananiya Eknath Ranade, founder of Vivekananda Kendra, for choosing Arunachal Pradesh as Kendra’s Karmabhoomi as early as 1977, when the first set of Vivekananda Kendra Vidyalayaswere established in the then Union Territory.

The Kendra today runs 41 schools in Arunachal Pradesh.

Khandu lauded the schools run by the Kendra, particularly the VKVs for providing all-round nationalistic education to the tribal children. He said the contribution of VKVs in improving the educational scenario in the state is immeasurable. 

Also Read | Arunachal: 1962 is history, will not be repeated, says CM Khandu

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