Banking exams in Kannada only a half measure, say activists

The Union government’s move to allow candidates to write recruitment exams for Regional Rural Banks (RRB) in 13 Indian languages, including Kannada, has been welcomed but termed it “a half measure”.

The exams could be written in English or Hindi till date. Kannada activists and political leaders, including Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, have demanded that the domicile clause that stipulates only candidates who studied Kannada till class 10 are eligible for the exams, must be restored.

Earlier, the recruitment exams were held at the State-level and only those who studied Kannada in tenth grade were eligible to attend. This ensured only Kannadigas got jobs in the State rural banks. The NDA government scrapped the rule and held the exam at the all-India level in Hindi and English from 2014. Activists opposed this on two counts – loss of jobs to Kannadigas and non-Kannadigas being posted in rural banks in the State.

Mr. Kumaraswamy thanked Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for allowing the recruitment tests to be held in Kannada. But he tweeted: “I request Ms. Sitharaman to revert the domicile condition from the 2014 notification. Candidates should study in the local language till class 10 to be eligible for the posts. This will help Kannadigas secure bank jobs. This is the need of the hour.”

Anand G. of Banavasi Balaga said the move was misleading and celebrations were premature. “The argument against holding the exams at the national level was not just about jobs, but also about the rights of Kannadigas. This is not addressed. Even now, people with no proficiency in Kannada hold posts in rural banks,” he said.

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2021 2:02:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/banking-exams-in-kannada-only-a-half-measure-say-activists/article28287615.ece

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