By: SHANMUGHASUNDARAM J
CHENNAI: It has been a year since the state government announced its policy decision to fill the backlog of unfilled vacancies intended for the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes in government jobs through special recruitment drives. However, it has not been translated into action till date as more than 10,400 posts reserved for SC/ST remained vacant.
Sources privy to the development said that the department of Adi Dravidar and Tribal Welfare have carried out an exercise and identified a shortfall of as many as 10,402 posts, which remained unfilled for more than a decade, in A, B, C and D categories across government departments.
Of them, 8,173 posts are reserved for SC and the remaining 2,229 posts reserved for ST candidates. Home, prohibition and excise department have a majority of these unfilled posts, accounting for more than 60 per cent of the backlog. Health, education and energy departments also have significant numbers of unfilled posts under reserved category.
“The department has communicated to all the heads of government departments to conduct a special recruitment drive to fill vacant posts. Chief Secretary (V Irai Anbu) chaired a meeting a couple of days ago, directing the Secretaries of all departments to expedite the process of recruitment,” said a senior official.
Following six months’ exercise, the AD Welfare Department has also issued an order on April 20 directing heads of all government departments to take necessary steps to fill up the shortfall posts through recruitment agencies. It should be filled up in suo moto as per the rules 27 (h) of Tamil Nadu Government Service Act.
“Though the government is keen on addressing social injustice, the bureaucrats are unwilling to delay and deny the rights of SC/ST community people. It shows the anti-Dalit mindset of the authorities,” VCK general secretary and MP D Ravikumar said.
This anomaly is robbing off the future of many reserved candidates. The backlog vacancies reserved for SC/ST has been growing every passing year, he said and pointed out the All India Survey on Higher Education’s report published in June last year revealed that 14,317 posts (teaching faculties) reserved for SC/ST in higher educational institutions remained unfilled in the state.
Chairman of social justice monitoring committee Suba Veerapandian said the backlog or shortfall of posts reserved for the SC/ST for a long period is cause of concern. “We will take up the issue and recommend the government and the Minister concerned to fill the vacancies at the earliest,” he said.
Minister for Adi Dravidar and Tribal welfare N Kayalvizhi Selvaraj told DT Next they have notified the shortfall vacancies to all the departments. They have been asked to give priority to fill the shortfall when they go for recruitment.