Lucknow- The 188 candidates with orthopaedic handicaps (OH) had nurtured aspirations for the Revenue Lekhpal recruitment, only to have their dreams shattered with the revelation of the final results on December 30, 2023, deeming them ineligible. The Uttar Pradesh Subordinate Services Selection Commission (UPSSSC) administered the Lekhpal exam for over 8,000 positions in 2022, with the conclusive results unveiled in December. Distressingly, 188 differently-abled candidates contend that they have been subjected to deception.
In a letter addressed to the Uttar Pradesh government, the candidates have alleged that out of the 309 seats earmarked for differently-abled students, 122 seats were reserved for PH (Orthopaedic Handicapped) category. All the differently-abled candidates had appeared for the Lekhpal exam held on July 31, 2022 after qualifying the Preliminary Eligibility Test (PET) of the UPSSSC. The UPSSSC had issued admit cards for Document Verification (DV) for all the differently-abled candidates who qualified for the revenue lekhpal exam. However, the differently-abled candidates belonging to OH (OL, OA, BA, BL, OAL) category were declared ineligible. The letter alleged that the differently-abled candidates were forced to sign a letter which declared that UPSSSC reserves the right to determine eligibility.
Protesting at Lucknow's Kanshiram Eco Garden, aggrieved candidates argue that if individuals with Multiple Disabilities (M.D) are eligible for similar positions, then those with Orthopaedic Handicaps (OH) should also be considered eligible. They highlight examples from states like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, and Punjab, where OH candidates have been deemed eligible for the role of Revenue Lekhpal, urging fair consideration in Uttar Pradesh.
The Mooknayak spoke to the protesting candidates at the Kanshiram Eco Garden. Sachin Kumar, a candidate from Hapur, said, "If we were ineligible for the post, then why were we called for the Document Verification? The UPSSSC had conducted the exam for the Revenue Lekhpal, who were to be appointed in the revenue department. The candidates had approached the Revenue department, which is believed to have assured them that these 188 posts that have become vacant will be added to the next recruitment, which means that the candidates would have to start from scratch for these vacancies.
Sajan, a candidate from Ghazipur, said, "We have worked hard for these exams, and we are dependent on these exams only because the private sector does not employ us, and ordinary people also don't treat us fairly. We request Chief Minister Mr. Yogi Adityanath to please have a look at the issue and fill the 188 vacancies. We have been to PICUP Bhawan, the UPSSSC headquarters several times, and the officials there have dismissed our grievances very rudely."
He dismissed the argument that the post of Revenue Lekhpal is not friendly to OH candidates and said, "In states like Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Punjab, the OH students were initially declared ineligible, but after they protested, they were declared eligible." He pointed out that the lekhpal is not supposed to do any hardcore physical work. Ashok Kumar, a candidate from Gorakhpur, said, "Till December 30, our parents and other relatives were hopeful that our disability won't be able to affect our employment, but now all the hopes have been shattered."