Group-I exam held amidst tight security

Strike Shatters Group-1 Dreams Of Several Aspirants From The Telangana Region

Group–I Main examination was held amidst tight security here on Sunday as an undeclared curfew prevailed in various parts of the Telangana region owing to the ongoing Sakala Janula Samme.

In Warangal, the hotbed of T agitation, all roads wore a deserted look right from morning till afternoon. The government conducted the examination despite KU JAC students attempting to obstruct the exam at Hanamkonda. Even as superintendent of police Rajesh Kumar and collector Bojja Rahul looked on, 15 student activists tried to enter Markazi High School but they were prevented by RAF and police personnel, who took them into custody. Police spread out the barbed wire on the Warangal-Kazipet main road to prevent the protesters reaching the exam venue.

However, ‘T’ strike had shattered the dreams of several Group-1 aspirants as they could not reach the test venues on time. While the exam began at 10 am, several candidates turned up late as the state transport buses were off the roads.

In Hyderabad, late comers were seen arguing with police personnel and the APPSC officials at different centres till about 11.30 am to allow them inside. The candidates said the APPSC officials should conduct a separate examination for them as they missed the test due to no fault of theirs.

Some of the candidates even threatened to approach the court against the APPSC authorities for being “insensitive” to their transport problems. “I had taken coaching from three training institutes during the past one year and was ready to write the exam. But because of the strike, I could not make it to the test venue,” said a candidate who had to travel from the Old City to Nampally.

Though the Osmania University Joint Action Committee (OUJAC) threatened to disrupt the examination, officials said that no untoward incident had happened in any of the centres in city. “We were well guarded and no case of disruption of examination was reported,” said Poonam Malakondaiah, secretary, AP Public Service Commission.

The Telangana region, however recorded a low attendance than coastal Andhra and Ralayaseema regions on Sunday. The attendance in the ‘T’ region__Hyderabad and Warangal 69.45% and 66.96% respectively, was less than the turn out at centres in Seemandhra including Tirupati and Warangal which recorded an attendance of 71% each. However, Vizag recorded an attendance 68.33%. A total number of 8,464 candidates had collected hall tickets for the test, officials said. APPSC authorities, however, maintained that the attendance percentage in the state has increased this year compared to previous years. “In 2005, the attendance percentage for main’s examination was just 38.09% and in 2007 it was 53.05%. The overall percentage has increased substantially,” said Malakondaiah.

Meanwhile, the OU-JAC criticized the APPSC authorities for conducting the exam at a time when the T region is going through a political turmoil.

“We had got calls from several candidates who wanted us to stop the exam as they could not reach the centres on time. The candidates spend years preparing for the test and they missed the test as APPSC refused to postpone the same,” said M Krishank, OU-JAC spokesperson.
Judicial staff union formed
Several judicial employees from Telangana districts met here at the Nampally Court Bar association on Sunday to form a Telangana Judicial Employees Association. They also unanimously dissociated themselves from the AP Judicial Employees Association and decided not to attend the proposed meeting of the AP unit scheduled for Sept 28. The meeting held at Nampally City Criminal Courts was attended by members from Nizamabad, Warangal, Medak, Nalgonda, Khammam but very few from Hyderabad and RR districts. The association would also be intimating the HC registrar on Monday that they would be joining the strike from Oct 1. In the interregnum period, employees would raise slogans in all courts during lunch hour. TNN RTC talks with T union leaders fail, strike to go on

Due to the on-going Sakala Janula Samme, the Andhra Pradesh State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) has reportedly suffered a loss of nearly Rs 60 crore till Sunday. Talks initiated by APSRTC officials with workers failed as the latter did not heed to call off the strike, which started on September 19. NMU Telangana Forum members said that APSRTC managing director B Prasada Rao during the talks informed them that the corporation had suffered Rs 60 crore losses. ``However, we informed the management that the strike cannot be withdrawn since it was the call given by TJAC and the government is responsible for the inconvenience caused to commuters,’’ NMU Telangana Forum co-convenor K Hanumanthu said. The union members claimed that the APSRTC management had not paid them salary for the period they had worked. ``When we asked the management about the salaries, they are linking it with the withdrawal of the ongoing strike as the pre-condition,’’ he said. They also expressed their aguish over the management not giving workers in Telangana the customary bonus of Rs 3,000 for Dasara, which was paid to their colleagues in the Seemandhra region. Later speaking to reporters, Prasada Rao said that action would be taken against employees who fail to report for duties from tomorrow.
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