Special Correspondent

It will increase their representation

NEW DELHI: The Government has decided to increase the number of attempts of disabled candidates from the present four to seven for Central civil service jobs. Also, any physically challenged person selected under the non-disabled category will be counted over and above the quota fixed for physically challenged persons. An additional relaxation of 10 years in the upper age limit will continue.

The measures will bring them on a par with candidates of the Scheduled Castes, the Scheduled Tribes and the Other Backward Classes in terms of reservation and with the SC category for the number of attempts. To ensure the full utilisation of quota for this category , it has been decided to treat the backlogs with respect to them in the same way as those for the SC/ST categories.

The steps will improve access and increase the representation of the physically challenged persons in the Central civil services. The implementation of the decisions shall be with prospective effect. The Government has also decided that while reservation for the three categories of disability (visual impairment, hearing impairment and locomotor disability or cerebral palsy) shall be made separately, the interchange in the vacancies among the three categories will be possible in case of non-availability of persons of a specified category.

A specially constituted medical board, comprising experts , will examine the physically challenged persons so that fair, consistent reports are available. The Union Public Service Commission will recommend physically challenged candidates after ensuring that they meet the prescribed eligibility criteria in terms of abilities/disabilities for identified services where vacancy exists.

The eligibility for availing reservation against the quota for physically challenged persons will be the same as described in the Persons with Disabilities Act, 1995. Specific eligibility criteria as set by the Government for identified services/posts will have to be met by the candidates.