Crores of rural job-seekers to gain maximum from Centre’s NRA

The salient feature of the new online test is that the CET is set to replace 50 exams conducted by various agencies for around 1.25 lakh government jobs

Among the several new norms post Covid-19 is the pandemic’s impact on the education sector, which is now increasingly going online. The Central government, which is the largest employer, too, has taken a leaf out of the new norm.

Crores of rural youth aspiring for government jobs stand to gain maximum with the Union cabinet on Wednesday approving the creation of a National Recruitment Agency for conducting an online Common Eligibility Test (CET) to screen and shortlist non-gazetted Group B and Group C posts.

The salient feature of the new online test is that the CET is set to replace 50 exams conducted by various agencies for around 1.25 lakh government jobs annually for which around 2.5 crore aspirants take these exams. The CET score, which will be generated immediately, shall be made available to the candidate as well as the individual recruitment agency.

The proposal also formed a part of Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s 2020-21 Budget speech.

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“The National Recruitment Agency will prove to be a boon for crores of youngsters. Through the Common Eligibility Test, it will eliminate multiple tests and save precious time as well as resources. This will also be a big boost to transparency,” PM Modi said in a tweet.

Reports say the NRA will hold control over the first-level test by the Staff Selection Commission (SSC), the Railway Recruitment Boards (RRBs), and the Institute of Banking Service Personnel (IBPS).

Being an online exam, it can be taken from any part of the country — an advantage for rural candidates who have to travel long distances to take any exam.

Besides, a 24×7 helpline, grievance redress system, and mock tests are other highlights of the new recruitment process.

Applicants need not travel outside their respective districts to access a centre as 1,000 centres are proposed to be set up countrywide

Since the exam is online and the candidates don’t have to travel long distances, the CET would also reduce chances of Covid-19 infection. In fact, the pandemic situation has led many states to go online on education front. On Tuesday the Madhya Pradesh higher education department decided to hold open book exams for graduation final year and post-graduation fourth semester starting next month.

The department attributed the switch to the present Covid-19 situation in the state. Over six lakh graduation final year and post-graduation fourth semester students in 1,406 colleges will write their exams from the safety of their homes via the open book system.

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