New Delhi: The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) has shortlisted 829 candidates in the Civil Services Examination (CSE) 2019, marking a marginal increase from 759 in the previous year. The results for CSE 2019 were released Tuesday.
The written exam for the CSE 2019 was conducted in September last year, and the interviews were concluded on 31 July 2020, delayed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In 2019, the commission had notified a total of 896 positions, against which it has picked 829 candidates. The selected candidates will now be allocated services like the IAS, IFS, IPS, etc.
While the number of candidates recommended for appointment as civil servants in 2019 is marginally higher than that for 2018, it is much lower than the number of candidates recruited since 2014.
In 2017, 2016, 2015 and 2014, the number of candidates selected by the UPSC was 990, 1099, 1,078 and 1,236, respectively.
The number of candidates selected is often lower than the number of positions identified — for example, while 812 positions were notified by the UPSC in 2018, the number of candidates selected was 759.
The UPSC had notified 1,364 positions in 2014, 1,164 in 2015, 1,209 in 2016 and 1,058 in 2017. This gradual reduction in the number of positions comes at a time when the country is grappling with an acute shortage of officers.
For the 2020 batch, the number of candidates selected by the UPSC will be even fewer since the commission has notified only 796 positions.
Why the fall
Asked about the selection of fewer candidates, an officer from the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said the trend “falls in line with the Modi government’s agenda of ‘minimum government, maximum governance’” .
“There is a clear pattern in reduced number of candidates being selected by the UPSC…It is in line with the idea that there should be fewer officers in government,” the officer added.
There is also the “lateral entry angle”, said another officer. “The government wants to keep recruiting private talent, and reduce the dependence on traditional bureaucracy… That is why you are seeing these declining numbers.”
“From 1,300 or so in 2014, the number has come down to just 800 or so… That is telling,” the officer added.