Female candidates exempted from IAS exam fee: Dr Jitendra Singh

NEW DELHI: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER), MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances,Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh disclosed here today that female candidates are exempted from IAS /Civil Services Examination fee, regardless of their background or socio-economic category.

In response to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Dr Jitendra Singh stated that in addition to this, in case of women, for widows, divorcees or women judicially separated from their husbands who are not remarried, the Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT) guidelines provide for age relaxation upto 35 years for employment to Group-C posts.

In case of women of such categories belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, this age relaxation is further extended upto 40 years. Similar relaxation also exists for Group-A and Group-B posts except where the recruitment is made through open competitive examination.

Responding to a starred question related to North East, Dr Jitendra Singh said in the Rajya Sabha that the Northeast has undergone unbelievable transformation over the last five years. The revolutionary change brought about under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the North Eastern Region, is to be seen to be believed, he added.

Dr Jitendra Singh further informed the House that while the Government of India's funding for the Central Government schemes is based on 60:40 ratio for other States, in case of 11 States including 8 States of North Eastern region and three Hill States of erstwhile Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, it was based on the ratio of 90:10.

However, he disclosed that in December 2017, the Modi government launched "North East Special Infrastructure Development Scheme (NESIDS)", whereby the Government of India's funding for Central schemes in the eight States of North Eastern region has been made 100%.

Responding to a query about the various schemes and development projects in Northeast, Dr Jitendra Singh said, the list is too long to be enumerated in a short span of time, even though he has handed over the list to the Hon'ble Member.

However, he said, to put it briefly, one can appreciate the magnitude of development when we realise that before 2014, at least two North Eastern States, namely Arunachal Pradesh and Meghalaya, had never seen a train, while today there is an Arunachal Express running between Itanagar and Delhi, and a broad-gauge Rail-Track being laid across the entire route.

Similarly, citing another example, he said, Sikkim, for example, did not have an Airport even though it became a part of the Indian union over four decades ago, but since last year Sikkim has an airport at Pakyong.

Referring to Road Sector, Dr Jitendra Singh said, for the first time in the history of independent India, a region based Road Corporation was constituted by the Modi Government, by the name "North East Road Sector Development Scheme (NERDS) " for special focus on the region.

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PTI