17L applications for 3,400 Talati posts in Gujarat trigger war of words

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Some 17 lakh aspiring candidates have filled forms for competitive exams for 3,400 vacant posts of ‘Talatis’, or executive heads in village panchayats, in the state.

The opposition parties are now alleging that this shows the rising rate of unemployment in the state.

The ruling BJP, however, maintains that all the 17 lakh applicants are not unemployed, and that at least 30 to 40 per cent of the candidates may be either employed by the private sector or even doing government job, but for better opportunity they might have applied for the Talati’s post.

The Gujarat Panchayat Service Selection Board (GPSSB) holds exams for the posts of Talatis.

The high number of applications exposes the state government’s tall claims of development and employment generation, alleged Congress spokesman Manish Doshi.

He even alleged that the state government charged Rs 110 for each form, thus collecting crores of rupees from the unemployed youth.

He also alleged that in 2018, some 35 lakh youth had applied for 2,937 Talati posts with the government collecting fees worth Rs 20 crore. However, the exams were cancelled after the recruitment scam surfaced.

In the last two years, the state government generated only 1,278 employments while there are around four lakh literate youth registered with the employment exchange, said AAP leader Isudan Gadhvi.

Rubbishing the claims, BJP media coordinator Yagnesh Dave said that ever since the BJP came to power, it initiated recruitment in the state government, unlike the Congress which had put a blanket ban on employment.

He also said that not all who applied for Talati jobs are unemployed, as some of them must be serving in the private sector or holding government jobs and are just looking for a better opportunity.

Minister of State for Panchayat, Labour, Skill Development and Employment, Brajesh Merja claimed that half of the applicants don’t even appear for the written exam.

To this, Doshi said that if the candidates do not appear for the written test even after paying the fees, it shows how little faith they have on the government or the selection board.

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