Government jobs in Kerala continue to be a big draw with over 12 lakh aspirants, including post graduates and research scholars, applying for lowest grade examinations this year, and many even attending coaching classes to ensure their success.
About 12.39 lakh persons applied for the post of peons, the examinations for which were conducted by the Kerala Public Service Commission (PSC). Most of the applicants hold higher qualifications and even Post graduates, M.Phil holders and research scholars are among the applicants, PSC sources told PTI.
While from the state capital 1.74 lakh candidates have applied, followed by Kozhikode 1.25 lakh, Kollam 1.10 lakh and Ernakulam 1.11 lakh have applied for the post. All this for a starting salary of about Rs 5,000 a month.
37-year old Ashwati, a graduate and mother of two, is trying her luck this time and has been attending coaching classes for the past two months.
"There is more security in government job, than a private job where they follow the hire and fire policy," she said.
The classes from 10.30 am to 1.30 pm have helped her to polish her current affairs and mathematics skills, she said.
Married to Prasad, a former Airforce personnel, she had travelled along with him to his place of posting and could not nurture her dream of a government job. "But now we are settled in Kochi and my children are grown up which gives me ample time to chase my dream," she said.
Ashwati said after attending coaching classes, she works for another 4-5 hours daily at home preparing for the examination.
On any second thoughts for applying for a peon's post, she replied in the negative. "Once I get the job, I can write further examinations and get promoted," she says.
23-year-old Manoj, a 12th standard passout, says he prefers government jobs to private ones as there are pensionary benefits and the family is taken care of.
Manoj, who did a basics course in Animation and had to discontinue his graduation, says a government job will give him ample scope to continue his studies.
Asked about the huge demand for government jobs, Dr K N Harilal, Member Planning Board, said, "There is a general feeling that once a person enters a government job, his life is secure. He will not be thrown out. Even in the marriage market, a government servant is in great demand. Those in the private sector, also apply for government jobs".