Strong opposition to changes related to languages in the new exam format of the UPSC has forced the govenment to put the changes on hold.

Last Updated: 2013-03-16T08:52:59+05:30

Changes in UPSC Exam Format Put on Hold by the Government

NEW DELHI: Faced by a strong opposition by political parties, the government has put on hold the changes in the exam format of the civil services exam conducted by the Union Public Services Commission (UPSC). The latest changes introduced by the UPSC give added weight to English and asks for certain conditions to be met by candidates appearing in regional languages.
The lower house of the Parliament (Lok Sabha) witnessed heavy protests by Hindi as well as non-Hindi heartland leaders who saw the new changes a conspiracy against regional languages
and backward classes.
Not only the Hindi heartland leaders but MPs from non-Hindi lobby such as Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Punjab also protested against the new changes that say the candidates can write the civil services exam in the language of their choice only if they have studied in college in that medium of instruction.
According to the new changes in the civil services exam pattern, a minimum of 25 candidates will be required for an exam centre to conduct tests in a particular regional language. This clause also left many MPs infuriated who were of the opinion that this will put students from rural backgrounds at a disadvantage.
The noisy and chaotic protests forced three adjournments of the Lok Sabha and the minister for personnel and training V Narayanasamy promised the order will be kept in abeyance as many members of Parliament felt the UPSC should not be biased against candidates with fluency in regional languages.
Even though pro-change supporters argue that the weight given to English is just 100 marks of the total 1,800 but the strong protests and opposition to the new changes mean that the new changes related to languages will not be implemented.

Many also argue that the language issue is an emotional one and policy makers should take all precautions before implementing such changes but there is another section that strongly feels that civil services is an all India services so selected candidates are posted in any part of the country and knowing just the regional langage will not help.
- By Iti Agarwal
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