THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: In a body blow to persons with disabilities (PwDs), the Revenue Department has turned a deaf ear to the Chief Minister’s directive to report three vacancies of Deputy Collectors to be filled by the physically handicapped (PH) candidates.
Though, the government issued orders to implement the three per cent job quota for PH candidates as per the directive of the Supreme Court, the Social Justice Department had delayed reporting the same to the PSC by almost a month.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan had also asked the Revenue Department to report the vacancies to the PSC. But the department cited there was no vacancy as such and they would have to create supernumerary posts.
Contradicting the department’s claim, the rank holders in the current list for the Deputy Collectors’ posts produced proof for the three vacancies with the department.They accessed the information through an RTI. They produced the same before the Kerala Administrative tribunal(KAT) when a case in this regard was taken up on May 20. Following this, the KAT had also ordered to report the vacancies to the PSC before June 20.Though almost a month has passed, The Revenue Department is feigning ignorance about the order. Revenue Additional Chief Secretary P H Kurien told Express the department had informed the CM that as of now there was no vacancy.But when pointed out the department had admitted to the KAT there were three vacancies, he said he has not seen the order.“I haven’t seen it yet. If there was a directive to report vacancies by June 20, it will be done,“ he said.
The PSC, on the other hand, has also has been creating roadblocks in dispensing justice to the PH candidates. It said the government order required further clarity citing the GO had stated it would intimate the modalities to be followed in filling vacancies.“Till we get further instructions, we will have to wait,” it said.
When the matter was brought to the notice of the Chief Minister’s office, a top source on condition of anonymity told Express the Revenue Department would be reporting the vacancies complying with the Chief Minister’s directive and the KAT order. The source also said the PSC’s stand was creating unnecessary impediments.
Meanwhile, some of the rank holders (from the general list) moved the KAT the other day demanding to provisionally report two vacancies. Based on this petition, the KAT ordered to report the vacancies provisionally to the PSC.
Chief Minister had directed the Revenue Department to report three vacancies of Deputy Collectors to be filled by the physically handicapped (PH) candidates to the PSC