National Recruitment Agency to be set up

Our Bureau. New Delhi | Updated on August 19, 2020


Will conduct Common Eligibility Test, eliminating the need for multiple tests

The Union Cabinet has paved the way for setting up the National Recruitment Agency (NRA). It will be an autonomous society under the Societies Registration Act 1860 and will conduct the Common Eligibility Test (CET).

“The NRA will prove to be a boon to crores of youngsters. Through the CET, it will eliminate multiple tests and save precious time as well as resources. This will also be a big boost to transparency,” tweeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday after the Cabinet decision.

Separate CET

NRA will conduct a separate CET each for the three levels of graduate, higher secondary (12th pass) and matriculate (10th pass) candidates for those non-technical posts to which recruitment is presently carried out by the Staff Selection Commission (SSC), the Railway Recruitment Boards (RRBs) and by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS). Based on the screening done at the CET score level, final selection for recruitment will be made through separate specialised Tiers (II, III) of examination that will be conducted by the respective recruitment agencies.

“The first set of recruitments through the CET can be conducted as early as next year itself,” said Jitendra Singh, Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.


The NRA will have representatives from the Ministry of Railways, Ministry of Finance/Department of Financial Services, SSC, RRB, and IBPS.The government has sanctioned a sum of ₹1,517.57 crore for the NRA. The expenditure will be undertaken over a period of three years. Besides setting up the NRA, the costs will be incurred for setting up examination infrastructure in the 117 aspirational districts.

“Around 2.5 to 3 crore people appear for over 1.25 lakh Central government vacancies in Group B and C every year through IBPS, SSC and RRB. Now, these multiple exams will be reduced to one,” said C Chandramouli, Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

The scores of CET will be valid for three years and candidates can improve the score by appearing again and the best score will be considered, added Chandramouli. It will be an online examination, and threr will be at least one centre in each district. There will be no restrictions on the number of attempts to be taken by a candidate to appear in the CET, subject to the upper age limit. The CET would be available in several languages.

“Setting up of NRA is a step taken in the right direction, as it will give more than one chance for the candidates to take the exam. To judge a candidate’s ability from a 2 to 3-hour test in a year is not correct as some of them are scared even when prepared. The CET will not only reduce the cost but will also bring transparency and give equal opportunities to the candidates,” said TV Mohandas Pai, Educationist and Chairman Manipal Global Education.

Published on August 19, 2020

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