Shillong: The Hynniewtrep Integrated Territorial Organization (HITO) on Monday urged Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma to increase the upper age limit for government job applicants in the state.

At present, the upper age limit for entry into government jobs for SC/ST candidates is 32 years and the HITO has demanded that the state government should increase it to 42.

The upper age limit has become a big obstacle for deserving candidates due to academic sessions and competition exams getting delayed or postponed amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, said HITO president Donbok Dkhar after meeting the CM on Monday.

“There is already an extreme shortage of government jobs in the state. Even through various competitive exams, it is a challenge for aspiring and able career-seeking youths to get jobs,” he added.

The HITO president cited the example of Karnataka Administrative Services for reference. “On September 14, 2014, the government of Karnataka had reasonably increased the upper age limit of candidates appearing for gazetted probationers of the Karnataka Administrative Services examination by two years giving them two more attempts to achieve their goal,” he said.

Dkhar said that the chief minister has assured the organisation that the government will call upon a committee and discuss the matter with the officials concerned. “The CM said that he cannot consider increasing the upper age limit to 42 years but he may try for 37,” he added.

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Meanwhile, HITO has given a month’s time to the government to act upon the matter, failing which it said it will be compelled to call the youths and demand for their rights.

HITO also submitted a memorandum and urged the government to take keen interest in the matter.

“With job opportunities even in the unorganised sectors, leave aside private, corporate or government, now getting scarce and relegated to empty or fraudulent promises, Meghalaya’s bright and dynamic youths need to see their government respond to them positively,” added Dkhar.

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