On the occasion of Police Smriti Diwas in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Adityanath last Sunday announced that by the end of next year (2019), around 1,25,000 constables will be recruited, ending the shortage of constables in the state.
If we look at the figures of recruitment from the last one and half years, we find out that not a single constable has been recruited during this period, let alone the promotion of the cops.
And while the figure of over one lakh sounds lofty and may look good for the UP government’s performance record, let’s see how this figure was arrived at.
On January 1, 2017, the government declared 41,520 vacancies for constables. However, at that time, the exam papers were leaked, and the process came to a halt. This process will now be reinitiated on October 25 and 26, this year. By the time the results are out, and the recruitments are done, it will take at least another two to three months.
With 41,520 vacancies yet to be filled, the Chief Minister on October 19 promised to recruit another 47,216 people in the police, which seems an overambitious and impractical promise made by the BJP ahead of the 2019 elections.
For the 41,520 vacancies – that are currently in the process of getting filled – the requirements are too many, according to the applicants, including physical test, medical test, stamina test and examinations.
Meanwhile, the Chief Minister also promised timely promotions to police personnel. In 2017, as many as 9,892 policemen, and in 2018, 37,575 policemen were promoted, which is a record, according to the CM.
The ground reality is, however, different.
Speaking with Newsclick, an applicant for the post of a constable, who chose to be anonymous, said, "A notification saying that the Yogi government will enroll 41,520 constables had come for the first time on January 1, 2018. Exams were conducted on June 18 and 19, in two shifts: morning and evening. But, the question papers that were supposed to be distributed in the evening, were given to the applicants in the morning, so the exams had to be cancelled. More than 10 lakh applicants had appeared in the exam. Another notification for the recruitment of 51,000 constables came, but when the previous recruitment drive is not over yet, what can anyone expect from the new notification?”
He said, "I have also appeared in the selection process of a sub-inspector. During the Akhilesh Yadav government’s tenure, in 2015, a notification had come, and it got cancelled, and again came in July 2016. Finally, after getting cancelled twice, the exam was held in July 2017, but again the paper was leaked, and exam was cancelled.”
According to him, between December 12 and 22, in 2017, a computer-based test (CBT) was held for which, approximately 6,30,000 candidates had appeared for 3307 vacancies. After the results, in the first week of July, they were asked to appear for a physical efficiency test (PET), which 6,500 applicants had cleared. But, he claims, none of the got any letter or confirmation ever after that.
Furthermore, during the Akhilesh government’s tenure, the police recruitment had turned controversial after the CM declared that there would be no written exams, and only physical test. This was challenged in the Supreme Court which reserved the judgment on the selection of 30,000 constables in favour of the applicants. However, the BJP government in the state has been trying take the credit for this positive development.
“In two years of the Yogi government, not a single sub-inspector has been recruited so far, so its looks like an election gimmick. We have worked hard, but such episode of paper leaks and delays are bringing our morale down. I do not have trust in Yogi government,” he said.
Another applicant claimed, "Between 2011 and 2018, only 3,000 sub-inspectors have been appointed, and 26,000 posts are still vacant so far, as per an RTI reply. The process of hiring is very slow, and we are pissed with the false promises.”
He also said that according to him, it’s impossible for the BJP government to recruit over lakh constables in the next year. “The process is very long an elaborate. It is just not possible, he said.”
Speaking over the issue, Samajwadi Party (SP) national spokesperson, Ameeque Jamei said, "Akhilesh government had started recruitment from assistance teachers, sub-inspectors, muallim (Urdu teachers), cook-cum-helpers, Anganwadi and Asha workers. BJP quashed all these when it came to power. For all these posts, around 13,00,00 candidates had tried their luck, but in every exam, either the paper was leaked or copies got exchanged, or some other reason. Recently, 3700 PhD candidates had applied for peon jobs in his state. Yogi says there are plenty of government jobs available in the state, but there is a dearth of educated and suitable candidates who can qualify for those jobs.”
He added, “Elections are around the corner, and Modi government at the Centre made a number of promises in its manifesto for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, but they could not keep those. They are destroying the future of the youth by not giving them employment, and dragging the mandir-masjid issue instead.”