NEW DELHI (Web Desk) – An online test for Indian Railways recruitment of disabled candidates was held on the second and third floor of a building yesterday with no lifts or ramps, making it an ordeal for applicants to reach the venue, Time of India reported on Friday.
The examination was held by the Railways Recruitment Board, on the orders of the supreme court, as part of a special recruitment drive – Opportunities for the differently-abled – plan to fill up more than 450 seats.
“Many candidates could not reach the exam centre. Some parents had to carry their wards up the stairs. Many of them were weeping,” said a candidate who appeared for the test at a cyber cafe in Pandav Nagar, east Delhi.
Manish Bhardwaj, another candidate whose right leg is afflicted by polio, had to drag himself to his allotted seat on the second floor. “The government wants us to beg. First, we have to fight the case till the Supreme Court to get vacancies in the disability quota filled. Then, we have to struggle to reach the examination centre,” he told TOI.
Railways officials admitted to “some problems” at 10 of the 142 centres across the country, where the test was conducted.
Apart from the Pandav Nagar centre in Delhi, candidates complained of similar difficulties at a centre in Bangalore and at least eight other places in the country.
The examination for the non-technical category, mostly for clerical positions in the Railways, had been advertised by the recruitment board as “Opportunities for the differently-abled”.
Admitting the problem, a Railways official said all candidates who faced hardship at these 10 centres would be given a chance to reappear in the examination.
Railways authorities blamed a private agency hired to suggest centres for the online examination for wrong selection of test venues. A senior railway official said action will be taken against the private agency.
“All the candidates will be informed by midnight and they will be given one more opportunity to appear in the examination,” he added.