Indian Railway employs around 13 lakhs personal of which around 70% is Group C staff with direct recruitment through Railway Recruitment Board popularly called RRB.
Considering 36 years of service life of a staff and recruitment through RRB for about 75% of the annual arising (keeping a margin for sports, cultural, delays etc.), the yearly requirement comes to around 6800 staff. With about 20% staff not joining or leaving in between, the annual requirement goes to the level of 8000 per annum.
The recruitment process during early years was quite slow with every activity from receiving application by post to publishing of the panel done manually. With development of information technologies and computerization, the recruitment process has undergone meaningful changes for the betterment towards fare and transparent recruitment process. The changes brought out were
- Objective questions instead subjective
- Introduction of Optical Mark Recognition popularly called OMR for faster and transparent evaluation of answer sheets
- Dispensing viva-voce/interview to remove any chance of favoritism.
- All RRBs holding examination on same day to correct the situation in which a candidate holding 3-4 appointment letters from different RRBs and in different categories thus wasting the efforts of RRB
- Introduction of on line submission of application making a beginning from the year 2014
- Now finally on line submission and on line examination for SSE/JE recruitment process on trial during 2015
With the introduction of reform at S.No. 5 and 6 above, IR has almost modernized its recruitment process. Indian Railways shall consider the following concern of the candidates and initiate corrective action for future recruitment process.
- A candidate can is permitted to apply for one RRB only. He is at dilemma whether to choose the RRB near to his home town or the one which gives him the best opportunity for selection i.e. the RRB advertising maximum number of posts. The cut-off of different RRBs varies considerably.
- Is it possible for any candidate to choose between C&W and Diesel or GS and TRS when he does not have any idea about the job profile of any of the post? Why not combine all the vacancies matching the minimum educational qualification and advertise on “IR basis” with candidates giving options for Railways/Divisions?
- To have a helpline to assist candidates on their quarries
With the introduction of latest reform in recruitment process of on-line application and examination, there is no relevance to continue with 19 RRBs. It will in the interest of candidates and Railways as well, to wind up all RRBs and go for centralized recruitment with all processes computerized up to the stage of formation of provisional panel being submitted to respective Railways. No candidate is required to visit a RRB office and with automation introduced, all the work can be managed from a single location. However, when new RRBs were introduced,there was a political angle that it will open job opportunities for the locals of that place. But it is not so because every one is eligible for the examination and has hardly added any additional job avenues for the locals. This has to be made very clear to politicians before venturing into it to avoid fanned out discontentment. The annual expenditure for each RRB may be of the order of 5-10 Crs. and the reform will not only bring a saving of around Rs. 50 Crs. but also a relief to the candidates.
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