Agartala: Day after the state government’s decision to recruit 1,488 candidates in the state’s paramilitary force engaging private agency for physical test, the Opposition Congress and the CPI-M has condemned the decision and threatened to challenge the decision legally.

Addressing a press conference, CPI-M state secretary Goutam Das said that the decision of recruitment of Tripura State Rifles (TSR) jawans through private companies cannot be accepted and they would oppose the decision until the government rollback the decision.

The state cabinet in its meeting approved 1,488 posts for riflemen (GD), including 10% seats reserved for women candidates.

“The TSR is an elite para-military force which has been working in its own way since its inspection. It comprises youths from both state and outside on a 75:25 ratio having IR battalions. Never in the past such an instance was witnessed in the state”, Das said.

He also said that the government is not allowing the police to work freely even after several complaints from the opposition party workers and supporters.

Earlier, the law minister Ratan Lal Nath said that the state government has also shortlisted three private agencies–Timing Technology India Private Limited and Esoft Consulting Limited from Hyderabad, and Bloom Electronics from Coimbatore to conduct physical tests for recruitment of these 1,488 TSR personnel.

The Pradesh Congress vice-president, Tapas Dey said that keeping an eye to the ADC elections, the state government has taken the decision to start the recruitment process.

“The mindset of the BJP-led government is to privatize all the sectors and now they have decided to recruit the TSR jawans through private companies. TSR like force is competent enough to recruit the jawans themselves like they have been doing in the past years,” Dey said.

He also said that using a private company to conduct the physical test would only demotivate the morale of the senior officials of the elite force. The government should immediately withdraw their decision.

“A total of 42,594 applications were received of which 35,642 were found in order and eligible for appearing in the physical test,” Nath said.

He also said that of these the 20,377 are from the state and 15,265 are from outside.

“The state candidates include 16,067 males and 4,310 female candidates, while 14,823 male and 442 female candidates from outside the state,” Nath added.

For eligibility, the candidates of general category would need a qualification of class-X pass with height of 170 CM, aged between 18-23 years. For scheduled caste and scheduled tribe candidates a minimum qualification class-VIII pass and aging between 18-28 years.

The method of recruitment would be divided into three phases. The physical test would be of 30 marks, followed by 60 marks of written and later 10 marks of personal interview.

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