Why reemploy retired persons without first exploring availability of suitable young candidates for jobs ?

Jayanta Debnath

September 7, 2020, 10:42:17   

The world has changed a long time back, this is a truth which many politicians in administrative works and officers and Department heads of different line Departments in Tripura Government are perhaps unaware of or unable to grapple with. Unfortunately their style of functioning appears to be archaic and many a time in divergence with the policies and objectives of the elected State Government. Many of these politicians and officers in government policy making bodies need to upgrade their skill  in tune with today's world. Could also be possible that some of them are waiting for the date of their retirement to approach, with no personal zeal left for adapting themselves to innovative, improved and new age style of functioning.

An advertisement has been published on September 5 2020 in various local dailies for recruitment of some officials in key positions including few contractual in important positions in the State Department of Agriculture. Out of these, two specific positions, namely - State Coordinator and Gender Coordinator appear to be seriously lacking in terms of having specific and detailed 'Job Description (JD)' for the respective positions. The way an ideal and professional recruitment process starts these days is with the advertisement for the positions mentioning clearly defined JDs. Any advertisement without a JD runs the risk of creating the following troubles:

• What does a State Coordinator or a Gender Coordinator need to do? Or what  would be  his/her Key Performance Areas (KPAs) once recruited? If these are not specifically mentioned in the job advertisements, this can lead to serious confusion.

• A job advertisement without specific JD can lead to candidates turning up for an interview with or without matching/suitable skill set for the position, thereby leading to wastage of valuable time and resources both for the candidates and the department officials as well. 

• Recruiting a candidate based on advertisement made without prior mention of specific KPAs for the position through a well developed job description can be in a way considered to be violating the principle of being an 'equal opportunity employer'. Any final recruitment in the process may appear arbitrary and discriminatory and can invite some serious issues.

The points mentioned above are to demonstrate how the officials of the Department are frozen in time without a proper and professional outlook or knowledge about an ideal recruitment process, even if it is for contractual jobs. Just mentioning eligibility criteria without proper description of the Key Performance Areas for the position can be considered to be an incomplete job advertisement in today's age of standard, fair and transparent recruitment process.

Another point in the same advertisement in discussion which needs to be highlighted, a line has been mentioned in bold stating: "Retired government employee with requisite eligibility criterion may also apply". This particular line may have objections from various quarters in terms of:

• Why provide jobs again to a retired person having already a financial security in the form of pension etc. without first exploring if availability of qualified and suitable candidates exist or not?

• This goes against the hard work and the sincere initiative of the current Government to create new jobs so that as many people as possible can be provided with jobs who have requisite qualification and skill sets to perform the 'job roles'

• Some might also argue that veteran retired State Government employees might be suitable only in terms of a very long years of experience and may have few skills, but not providing opportunities to younger minds who are more in tune with today's contemporary world may lead to loss for the Government in terms of failing to achieve the desired objectives of that particular job position. The younger and more professional pool of talents these days can be considered to be more conversant with technological knowhow, latest concepts of socio-economic development, latest scientific breakthroughs, idea about latest market trends and means of market linkages and a host of other enabling factors.

The brief points in the above section perhaps highlights how some of the officers in some of the line Departments, knowingly or unknowingly are working in divergence to the valiant efforts of the State Government to bring in socio economic development of the State. 

Last but not the least and may not be an insignificant observation when one considers the brand building and reputation management of a particular line Department. The home page of Tripura Agri Department (www. still mentions  "Tripura is one of the seven states in the north eastern part of India....". Seems like the leaders of the Department are still frozen in time and not aware that there are actually 8 States these days in NER. Or perhaps they are not willing to recognize any one from the other 7 NE States to be included in NER? In that case they might like to educate the Minister DoNER about their opinion? In short with leaders of a department as important as Agriculture not even caring for minute and simple details, how safe is the Agriculture Sector of the State and the overall welfare of the farming community in their hands? This is a question that many would like to ask.

Experts might also like to opine that in such a situation, specific activities like developing a holistic job advertisement for various Government line departments are better to take a specialized government or private agency into recruitment and staffing solutions if existing any within the State currently. Constitution of a small but very effective standalone platform within the Department like Agriculture giving Project Management Consultancy (PMC) may help the Government to bring in new era talents and expertise to further enhance the growth of the agri sector in the State.

This is why I am saying that it is seen that the retirees are being re-employed in some government departments. But many talented unemployed people are not getting jobs. But the BJP had promised 50,000 jobs in the first year before the assembly polls-2018. But now it is being said that let the unemployed youths  do business with bank loans. I can understand that it is not possible to give government jobs to all the educated unemployed youths.   But questions arise that is it possible for everyone to be a businessman or self employed? The question has also arisen as to why the educated unemployed youths are not being given jobs even when there are vacancies in various government departments and PSUs in Tripura. Or why the government is not making arrangements for the welfare of the unemployed by increasing private job through bringing private investment? The Tripura government should make public its policy program in this regard to the unemployed for the interest of the youths of Tripura so that they can decide their future accordingly. 

This news article will achieve its desired objective if it is taken in the right spirit and not just as a mere criticism but as a constructive feedback to the Government to further improve its processes and systems to provide innovative and efficient Governance to the people of the State.  


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