Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal has urged the Union government to set up an examination centre either at Ludhiana or Jalandhar to facilitate the civil services aspirants from the state.
In a letter written to union minister of state for personnel and training Jitendra Singh, the chief minister apprised him that thousands of students from the state appear for civil services examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) annually, according to an official release issued here on Sunday.
The chief minister said at present there is no examination centre in the state.
"Chandigarh being the nearest centre, all students from Punjab have to come here for appearing in the prestigious examination. Many of these students have to travel 300 km to reach Chandigarh.
"As the examination starts in the morning, students who come from far off places in Punjab cannot afford to take risk of travelling from their hometown to Chandigarh on the day of the examination. Therefore, most of them have to travel a day prior to the examination and make arrangements for their boarding and lodging at Chandigarh," he pointed out.
The chief minister said apart from other inconveniences, this also causes a lot of economic hardships to the poor students, especially from the rural areas of border districts located farthest from the capital city.
Badal sought the Union Minister's immediate intervention to resolve this issue on priority by setting up "at least one examination centre in the state for ensuring equal opportunity to all."