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RSS body wants no English test for selection of Class IV staff

The outfit of educational activists stressed on the Staff Selection Commission exams for multi-tasking (non-technical) posts in central government offices.

, ET Bureau|
Aug 28, 2019, 09.12 AM IST
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RSS
The organisation has also asked for a complete reform of the UPSC exams, saying that these were highly tilted towards engineering graduates and English-speaking students.
Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas, an RSS affiliate, plans to propose removal of basic English test from competitive exams for government jobs like office assistants, gardeners, peons, cleaners and watchmen.

The outfit of educational activists stressed on the Staff Selection Commission exams for multi-tasking (non-technical) posts in central government offices.

As of now, 25% questions in this exam, conducted in two parts, are meant to test the English language skill of the candidates. According to Nyas members, this leaves rural candidates at a disadvantage, and the level of the English questions is much higher than what the candidates are expected to know for their jobs.

Nearly 19.18 lakh candidates appeared in the SSC’s multi-tasking exams held in 146 cities in February, according to government records. Apart from English, they were tested on general awareness and mathematical abilities.

In the 2018 exams, the candidates were asked to tick the synonyms for words like ‘grumble’, ‘rejoice’, ‘lurk’, ‘savage’, ‘intimidating’ and ‘lethargic’. They were also asked the meanings of phrases like ‘loose cannon’ and ‘all and sundry’.

They had to finish proverbs such as ‘a man is known by the company he keeps’ and differentiate between ‘a few’ and ‘few’. A section required them to tick on the correct spellings of ‘separate’, ‘annihilate’ and ‘journal’. They were also asked to comprehend a paragraph with words such as ‘hapless’, ‘formidable’ and ‘sadist’.

“English is not a qualifier but an important part of the test. In reality, however, these candidates are seeking jobs which needs very little English. What is the use of English for a gardener or a watchman? The system of testing them for English started with the British and there is no reason why it should continue now,” said Devendra Singh, the Nyas national convener for competitive exams. A proposal in this regard will be submitted to the Centre, he said.

The organisation has also asked for a complete reform of the UPSC exams, saying that these were highly tilted towards engineering graduates and English-speaking students.

Shiksha Sanskriti Utthan Nyas secretary Atul Kothari said a high-level deliberation committee, including RSS leaders like Pranav Pandya and Acharya Balakrishna of Patanjali, has been formed to streamline the proposal of making the education system value-based and India-centric.
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