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Arunachal: Pema Khandu appeals public to maintain peace

Chief Minister Pema Khandu said, “Our intention was only to overhaul the Commission and give reprieve to innocent aspirants who unfortunately became victims of the paper leakage scam.

ITANAGAR-  Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu appealed all agitating youths and general public to understand the situation and maintain peace.

Khandu stated that ”  Respecting the sentiments of the people, the state government has called off the scheduled oath taking ceremony of the designated chairman and members of Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC)”.

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Informing of the decision in the statement this afternoon, Chief Minister Pema Khandu said, “Our intention was only to overhaul the Commission and give reprieve to innocent aspirants who unfortunately became victims of the paper leakage scam.

With that intention we gave advertisement for filling up the posts of chairman and members of the commission and followed it up with the laid down norms for formation of a commission and make it functional as soon as possible. We believed that formation of the Commission by swearing in of the new chairman and members would be for public good as it would pave way for conduction of examinations and offer aspirants a fair opportunity without wasting much time.”

“However, it has come to our notice that several aspirants, their parents and the general public are not in agreement with the steps we were taking and therefore came out on the streets to protest. Respecting their sentiment, the government has decided to call-off the scheduled oath taking ceremony. We will decide further action in this regard after detailed consultations with all stakeholders,” he added.

Arunachal: PAJSC observes Mass Movement against APPSC paper leakage scam

Khandu reiterated that revelation of the paper leakage scam was equally shocking to the government as to the general public.

He said that the government dealt the situation with iron hand from day one and the Special Investigation Cell (SIC) of the state vigilance department was given a free hand to investigate the case and apprehend all who had a hand in it irrespective of power or position.

“The SIC was doing a commendable job as proved by the many arrests that it made. However, as demanded by the general public for a free and impartial enquiry by an independent and credible agency, we decided and requested the CBI to take over the investigations. CBI has taken over the case from the SIC and investigations are on. All persons involved will be punished sooner or later,” he said.

Khandu reiterated that the government cannot interfere in the functioning of the Commission as it is an autonomous body.

“It became evident to us that complete overhauling of the commission and reframing its standard operating procedures (SOP) is the only way forward to regain the faith of the people in the commission. Therefore, to set the ball rolling, all members of the erstwhile commission resigned on moral ground,” he said.

He informed that it also came to light that the government officials posted in the Commission were staff of the autonomous body and didn’t come under the direct control of state civil secretariat.

To correct this and make the officials accountable, Khandu said, a cabinet meeting was held, which decided to merge all govt staff of the commission with the state civil secretariat. This way, he added, the government could take departmental action against any erring official of the Commission as they were no longer under the sole jurisdiction of the autonomous body.

Khandu appealed all agitating youths and general public to understand the situation and maintain peace.

“We are more than concerned about the unfortunate paper leakage and determined to revive and rejuvenate the APPSC. We have no other intention but to provide free, fair and equal opportunities to our youths through the Commission,” he added.

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