JAMMU, July 28: Aam Aadmi Party today exposed an alleged recruitment scam that has taken place in selection of employees in Fire and Emergency Services, Jammu and Kashmir.
Producing documentary evidences in support of its claim, the Aam Aadmi Party stressed the need to hold a high level inquiry through the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for putting accused behind the bars.
Addressing a press conference, AAP’s Gagan Partap Singh explained that the said scam was started in the year 2013 when advertisement was notified for 870 posts out of which 696 posts were of Firemen and Firemen drivers, including 598 posts of Firemen and 98 of drivers. “Approximately 60,000 aspirants applied against the posts after which Physical Standard Test was held followed by written examination by recruitment board of F&ES Department and than 14000 aspirants were shortlisted but interview for final selection could not be conducted in 2014 because of flood tragedy in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
“In 2017, than Chief Minister took cognizance of a report of Director General F&ES and cancelled the recruitment after which many candidates approached the court, which directed the Government to hold the recruitment process afresh,” Gagan Partap said adding that the then BJP – PDP Government ordered to hold this recruitment under TRP (Transparent Recruitment Process) and a Hyderabad based company namely Timing Technologies India Pvt Limited was hired for the same.
In 2018, physical test of shortlisted 14000 candidates was conducted and 7000 candidates passed the test and then appeared in written examination, which was conducted for the second time in 2018. The candidates again leveled serious allegations of mass copying, unfair means and irregularities but Government took no action following which the aggrieved candidates again approached the court, which directed the Government to frame an inquiry panel. The inquiry panel, headed by then Principal Secretary Home, J&K, Shaleen Kabra observed that large scale irregularities, mass copying and unfair mean practices had taken place and submitted a report to the Government following which the examination conducted for the second time was cancelled again and recruitment firm hired was blacklisted.
In 2020, Government hired another agency LMES and before conduct of examination on September 20, 2020, paper was allegedly leaked a day earlier and sold openly in the market for lakhs of rupees. The selection list was issued on 3rd of October, 2020 and the appointments were made within three days to hush up the matter and close the recruitment at the earliest. The appointments were made without any police verification.
Giving a reference of the selection list, Gagan Partap said that nepotism and irregularities in this recruitment can be gauged from the fact that four members of a single family were selected and there are many other such instances.
“This recruitment scam in Jammu and Kashmir Fire and Emergency Services has broken all the records of scams and this is possibly for the first time that scams and irregularities have been committed for three consecutive turns in a single recruitment process,” said Gagan Pratap Singh and demanded a CBI probe in this scam in first go as big fishes including politicians, bureaucrats are apparently deep rooted in the nexus.