Government officials have taken mass leave to prepare for KAS exams, crippling government works in Kerala
Assistants at the government secretariat in Thiruvananthapuram who have gone on leave to prepare for the Kerala Administrative Service (KAS) examinations will be dismissed from service if they do not re-join duty immediately, a leaked government letter reveals.
The secretariat in Thiruvananthapuram, is the seat of administration of the Kerala government, housing important ministries and bureaucratic offices.
The preliminary examination for the KAS, which is seen as an equivalent to Indian Administrative Service (IAS), is scheduled to be held on February 22.
Kerala is holding the KAS examination for the first time.
According to the letter signed by General Administration Department (GAD) Principal Secretary, the mass leave by government staff is affecting the functioning of the government offices.
The letter addressed to Chief Minister states that if those on leave sit for KAS examinations, then they will be disqualified.
“The Assembly is scheduled to begin on January 31. There is a lot of work to be done. However, assistants going on leave has affected the entire operations. And also, it has affected the common man,” the letter reads.
The letter also adds that those who have gone on leave should immediately re-join duty or quit the job and prepare for examinations.
As per sources in the Public Service Commission, which is holding the examinations for the state, more than 1000 vacancies of KAS Officer (Junior Time Scale) Trainee Posts such as Under Secretary, Assistant Commissioner, Inspecting Assistant Commissioner, Administrative Officer/Accounts Office, DEO among others, are available in various state departments.
KAS Recruitment is being done through three streams – Stream 1, Stream 2 and Stream 3.
Stream 1 is for KAS direct recruitment while Stream 2 and Stream 3 are for the candidates who are already working in government departments.
These are the employees, who are bunking government jobs and preparing rigorously for the examinations by attending coaching classes in Thiruvananthapuram.
Pramod Kumar VS, a job aspirant, told The Lede that government should take strict action against such corrupt people.
“They are already in a job. We are unemployed and looking for a job desperately. They are doing harm to us and government,” Pramod added.
Pramod who is attending coaching classes for the last six months also told The Lede that there are many government employees in the secretariat who are also going as trainers in various coaching centres in the city.
“They see it as an extra income. For an hour they are taking at least Rs 600. And they all are on either paid leave or sick leave from the government job. These people are really greedy ones,” Pramod added.
Unemployment in Kerala is nearly twice the all India average, according to the 2018 Kerala Economic Review tabled in the state assembly.
According to Kerala’s Directorate of Employment data, in 2018 there were 38.75 lakh job seekers in the state. It was 37.75 lakh in 2017 and 35.23 lakh in 2016.
In Kerala, within the public sector employment 46% are employed in state government and 11% in central government, 24% are in state quasi-government institutions, 4% in local self government institutions and 15% are in central quasi-government institutions.