As civil service aspirants continued their protests, the Union government said on Monday that a solution to their agitation against the pattern of UPSC exams will be found within a week.
"The UPSC issue will be resolved within a week. Discussions are going on," home minister Rajnath Singh told reporters in Delhi.
Singh said he had held a meeting on Sunday to find a way out following a directive from the Prime Minister.
Replying to a question, the home minister said the report of the three-member government-appointed committee, which is looking into the demands of the aspirants to change the pattern of the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) to give level-playing field to those coming from rural areas, will come soon.
— ANI (@ANI_news) July 28, 2014
Singh, however, remained non-committal when asked whether the civil services preliminary examination, scheduled to be held on August 24, will be postponed.
Exploring other options, a 21-member delegation of aspirants that included NSUI national president Rohit Chaudhary and general secretary Mohit Sharma met Rahul Gandhi at his residence in Delhi.
The Congress vice-president assured the delegation that no injustice will be done to the aspirants and that he will raise their concerns at all appropriate fora, according to the national spokesperson of the Congress' students' wing, Amrish Ranjan Pandey.
Also, scores of aspirants staged protests outside the office of the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) in the Capital, demanding scrapping of the Civil Service Aptitude Test (CSAT), calling it discriminatory against those with a Hindi background.
"We have been protesting for the last 20 days, but UPSC is doing nothing for us. Nobody is ready to pay heed to our demand. We will not sit silent till our demand is met," a protestor said. Slogans were also raised against UPSC.
Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, meanwhile, wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, demanding his intervention in the UPSC row as a large number of Hindi medium students from the state write the prestigious exam every year.
In his letter, the UP chief minister requested Modi to re-consider the new UPSC exam pattern "keeping in mind theory of equality".
"Large number of students from UP write UPSC examination and their primary language is Hindi. In CSAT, the question papers made available to aspirants in Hindi and other languages are being translated through a software due to which their actual meaning gets distorted and aspirants get confused," Yadav said.
(with ANI inputs)