After a meeting of Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao with the chairman of Telangana State Public Service Commission which is in the eye of a storm over question papers leakage in recruitment exams conducted by the commission, the State government has said it is “not a systemic or institutional failure” but wrongdoing by two individual employees.
“The government will give the employees — P. Praveen Kumar and A. Rajasekhar Reddy — the strictest punishment while owning responsibility to take remedial action,” Industries Minister K.T. Rama Rao told a media conference after the meeting.
Mr. Rao was among four Ministers, Chief Secretary A. Santhi Kumari and TSPSC chairman B. Janardhan Reddy who met the Chief Minister to analyse the reasons for the leakage.
It was decided to conduct as soon as possible re-exams for the preliminary test of Group I services, Assistant Executive Engineers, Divisional Accounts Officer and Town Planning Building Overseer posts, which were cancelled due to leakage.
“All the study material for the exams will be posted online for viewing by candidates free. They need not pay exam fee again. The reading rooms in town and villages will be kept open 24 hours and the candidates will be served free food for their preparations. All the district Collectors will be asked to make arrangements,” Mr. Rao said.
On its behalf the ruling Bharat Rashtra Samiti has lodged a complaint with the Director General of Police to investigate the hand of forces, if any, behind the two employees. The antecedents of Rajasekhara Reddy who was identified as a BJP activist will also be probed, he added.
Mr. Rao said the government was convinced that the system in place for conduct of exams by TSPSC was strong. The Special Investigation Team of police had prima facie found lapse because of the conduct of the . two employees Therefore, the wrong doing could not be ascribed to the commission.
While acknowledging the pain of the candidates who took the exams but have to reappear again, Mr. Rao appealed to them to see the piquant situation of the government. He also appealed to Opposition parties not to stoke the passions of unemployed youth. The government will take fool proof measures to see it was not repeated. People will judge the performance of the government due in six or seven months., he said, ruling out a CBI probe.