TChief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao is likely to ask the TSPSC chairman to step down owing moral responsibility for paper leakage. ( File Photo: PTI)
Hyderabad: The beleaguered Telangana State Public Service Commission (TSPSC) may soon undergo a major overhaul as some top officials may be asked to resign. Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao is likely to ask the TSPSC chairman to step down owing moral responsibility for paper leakage that led to the cancellation of four recruitment exams and erupted into a major political conflict with opposition leaders organising protests to call for a high-level probe.
Following the TSPSC question paper leakage, Chandrashekar Rao is planning to implement sweeping reforms in the Commission to prevent question paper leakages and ensure its effective functioning in the future. The Chief Minister is believed to be furious at TSPSC chairman B. Janardhan Reddy and secretary Anita Ramachandran. He is reportedly of the view that the situation could have been prevented if the chairman and secretary had taken appropriate and effective steps to closely monitor the activities of the staff in the "confidential section" dealing with question papers, evaluation, and so on.
Since the TSPSC is a constitutional body and chairman cannot be removed by the state government, it is learnt that the Chief Minister may ask the chairman to resign owing moral responsibility for paper leakage. The Chief Minister reportedly decided to transfer Anita Ramachandran from secretary post. These changes are expected once the Special Investigation Team (SIT) submits its inquiry report on paper leakage to the state government.
Official sources informed Deccan Chronicle that the Chief Minister has been holding meetings at his official residence in Pragathi Bhavan with legal experts, senior government officials, former officials and members who worked with the UPSC, TSPSC, APPSC as well as academicians to gather their feedback on the reforms to make the TSPSC recruitment process "foolproof".
According to sources, the TSPSC secretary, who will be an IAS officer, will be given more powers in conducting recruitment exams and handling confidential matters related to the examinations. Further, the TSPSC office is expected to be relocated from Nampally to a more secure location. These measures are expected to be implemented shortly after the SIT submits its report on paper leakage incidents to the state government.
Public Service Commissions such as the TSPSC are constitutional bodies, and state governments do not interfere in their activities. As secretary, an IAS officer will represent the state government in TSPSC. Anita Ramachandra is currently the secretary of the TSPSC.
However, the secretary currently has no role in the exam procedure. TSPSC's chairman and members handle all "confidential works" related to exams, question paper preparation, paper evaluation, and so on. Sources informed that the CM now plans to entrust confidential exam-related duties and responsibilities to the secretary, who can report directly to the government if any anomalies are discovered.
The TSPSC regulations are in line with the regulations brought by the Andhra Pradesh government in undivided AP in 1963. After the bifurcation of the state in 2014, the state government adopted these regulations, which are called "TSPSC Regulations". The CM now plans to change these regulations and bring in sweeping reforms in TSPSC for its effective functioning in future.