The initial round of discussions between the striking PSC rank holders’ associations and the government ended on an optimistic note on Saturday.
On the 26th day of the strike, the association leaders said they would continue the agitation peacefully until the discussions with the government yielded tangible results.
Principal Secretary, Home, T.K. Jose and Additional Director General of Police Manoj Abraham represented the government. The police had served the strikers notice to attend the meeting in the morning.
Separately, Chief Minister Pinaray Vijayan urged PSC rankers not to fall prey to disinformation or resort to desperate acts of violence.
CPI(M) Polit Bureau member Kodiyeri Balakrishnan urged PSC rankers to walk back from the path of agitation and to trust the government. Congress legislators Shafi Parambil and K.S. Sabarinath continued their fast in front of the Secretariat to express their support to the striking PSC rankers.
Officials said the Sports and Youth Affairs Department would hold separate talks with national medal winners eligible for government jobs. The government would accommodate them as vacancies arose.
It would also confer with representatives of those on the PSC rank list for appointment to post of civil police officer. The administration would point out that the government had limited legal latitude in reviving obsolete rank lists.
The Opposition continued to intensify their struggle against the government on “backdoor appointments and denial of jobs to PSC rankers”. Youth Congress workers staged a mock PSC test in front of the Secretariat.
They recreated the scandal related to SFI leaders gaining top ranks by using digital devices to cheat in the PSC test for appointment to the civil police officer post.
In Kollam, the police grappled with KSU workers who attempted to storm the District Collectorate. In Pathanamthitta, the police fought back Youth Congress workers who tried to storm their line.