There is good news for about 800 candidates as Haryana Public Service Commission (HPSC) on Thursday announced the revised result of the preliminary examination of Haryana Civil Services (executive branch) and Allied Services, 2011.
The result was revised by the HPSC following directions of the Punjab and Haryana high court. The high court in December 2012 had directed the commission to constitute an experts' committee to look into the issue of wrong questions and answer key of the preliminary examination. The experts committee was asked to consider representations of the candidates.
Hindustan Times in a series of news reports in 2012 had exclusively highlighted the discrepancies in the question papers of the preliminary examination.
As per the revised result declared by the HPSC on Thursday, 835 new candidates have qualified for the mains in addition to the 2,409 candidates declared successful earlier. In the new successful candidates, 613 are from the general category, 132 from the scheduled castes category, 69 from backward classes, 20 from ex-servicemen category and one from the physically handicapped category.
'Need more time to prepare'
While the revised result is sure to perk up the new successful candidates, a large number of candidates are dismayed over the inadequate time provided by the commission to prepare for the mains.
The HPSC while declaring the result of preliminary examination on May 4, 2012 had given a period of about three months to the candidates for preparation. However, in the revised result declared on Thursday, the commission has indicated to provide a tentative period of 43 days for preparation. "The mains examination will be held after March 15, 2013," said the commission's order.
"We have to prepare for five papers -- two optional subjects, one each of general studies, English and Hindi. The time gap indicated by the commission for holding the mains is too small," said a newly qualified candidate.
Candidates seek parity
Newly qualified candidates say the decision of the commission to grant them only 43 days for preparation as compared to the three months given to the previously qualified candidates was against the principles of equality. In fact, several candidates are also exploring the option of moving court. "It is not fair on the part of the commission. They gave three months to candidates who had qualified in the preliminary examination in May 2012, but gave us only 43 days," said a newly qualified candidate.
During the course of the hearing of the matter in the Punjab and Haryana high court earlier, the counsel for the petitioners had sought a reasonable period of time for the conduct of main examination after the declaration of the revised result.
Counsel for the commission Puneet Bali had verbally informed the high court during one of the earlier hearings that HPSC would provide three months for conduct of main examination after declaring the revised result. This aspect though was not part of the December 3, 2012 orders of the HC.
March 25, 2012: Preliminary examination for HCS and allied services conducted for 151 posts in which 41,366 candidates appeared
Inaccuracies were spotted by the candidates in the question papers of preliminary exam
When these candidates made representation to the HPSC, the commission chose a novel method to dispose of the matter by awarding marks for all wrong questions instead of following a more credible and transparent method of referring the matter to experts for settling the issue
May 4: Result of preliminary exam declared on May 4; 2,409 candidates qualified for the mains
June-Aug: Unsuccessful candidates file petition in the high court, challenging the conduct of the examination. On the other hand, commission announces that main examination will be held from September 2, 2012
Aug 30: Justice Augustine George Masih postpones the mains scheduled for September 2 and directs HPSC to constitute an experts' committee to decide 151 representations received from candidates
Sept 4: HPSC challenges the single-bench order, gets stay from the division bench. Commission, however, is directed not to hold the main examination till further orders.
Dec 3: HC directs HPSC to constitute an experts' committee to look into the issue of wrong questions and answer key of the preliminary examination. Experts' committee asked to consider representations of the candidates