“We realised that we have not given candidates enough time to know that the criteria have changed, so we relaxed the qualifications needed to Class 10,” Goyal told mediapersons.
Railways has relaxed the minimum qualification for its 62,907 vacancies of trackmen, helpers etc in Group D recruitment, dropping the requirement of an Industrial Training Institute or equivalent certificate as was decided last year.
Railway Minister Piyush Goyal said that ever since the notification of the vacancies, he has been getting a lot of complaints from aspirants as well as from his party colleagues that Railways did not publicise enough the change in Group D job criteria last year. In June-July, 2017, the requirement of ITI or equivalent was added to the pre-existing minimum qualification of Class X.
“We realised that we have not given candidates enough time to know that the criteria have changed, so we relaxed the qualifications needed to Class 10. We have a robust training programme which we plan to strengthen further. So there should be no problems,” Goyal told mediapersons Thursday. Accordingly, the technical qualification was made optional for the current recruitment drive.
Now anyone with a minimum Class X certificate can apply for the posts and railway officials expect a deluge of applications. “The last date for the applications would be extended by a minimum of 15 days and notified soon,” he said.
Many people did not know about this, and it was unfair to candidates who had been preparing over the past years for this examination, Goyal said.
“Therefore, it has now been decided that for this exam, the criteria will be class 10 or ITI or equivalent, again,” the minister said.
The ministry had earlier also relaxed the age criteria for applicants by extending it by two years across all categories.
It has also clarified that general candidates, who have to pay Rs 500 as examination fees, will get Rs 400 back if they appear for the exam, while those in special categories have to pay Rs 250, which will be fully refunded once they sit for the test. For a refund, candidates have to submit details of their bank accounts online.
Goyal also said question papers to candidates will be provided in 15 languages and they can now sign their names in any language instead of only in Hindi or English.
The Railways has announced one of the world’s largest recruitment processes for 89,409 posts in Level 1 and Level 2 categories. Since recruitment is taking place after four years, many changes proposed in the intervening years had been included in the rules, Goyal said.
However, some of these changes had led to many candidates not being able to apply for the posts this year because of lack of information about the new qualification rules.
Revised age limit for assistant loco pilots and loco pilots:
Unreserved category: 30 years
OBC: 33 years
SC and ST category: 35 years
Revised age limit for Group D exams:
Unreserved category: 30 years
OBCs: 36 years
SCs and STs: 38 years