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UPSC exams favours English medium students, says aspiring UPSC students
Civil Service aspirants are not busy with books in their hand, but are rather demanding the scrapping of Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT), calling it discriminatory against Humanities students and those with Hindi background. Hence, the much sought after Civil Services Examination (CSE) conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is mired in controversies.

The CSE exam is conducted in three stages, preliminary, main, and interview. This is an exam through which candidates for the prestigious IAS, IFS, IPS and alike are selected. All this controversy started after the UPSC introduced the Civil Services Preliminary Exam. Till then, the exam used to have two papers, one on General Studies (GS) and the other being an optional subject. But from 2011 this pattern witnessed a change and the board has decided to replace the optional subject paper with CSAT, which tests the aptitude of the candidate.

Now the aspirants are protesting against this change in the syllabus and are saying that this new pattern is heavily tilted in favour of those from Science or, more specifically, Engineering background and is discriminatory against students coming from humanities background, particularly those with Hindi-medium. 

We talked to few CSE aspirants, who had this to say. said that the exam revolves around English.

Binod Mehta, a CSE aspirant blamed the Verma Committee, and said, "This committee was formed in March 2014, and they have not been given any kind of work related to the problem we are facing now. They were been given some other work. We demanded a new committee to solve our problem, but the government did not do so. We won't be accepting this report and will trigger the protest."

Explaining the problem with the new pattern, he said, "With the new pattern, people with English background are getting 50-60 marks in the first paper (GS) and 180-190 marks in the second paper (CSAT), and they are getting selected, which is not good. This new pattern was designed only for the people with a public school background and those with English background. For them the second paper is very easy and they score in it and get through the exam. We demand a process where the selection is done on the basis of the first paper that is GS, as it is the main subject." 

Another aspirant, Shobit Shukla who is giving a second attempt says, "Because of the inclusion of CSAT, the second paper has become very tough. It is not only about the English language questions, but the comprehensive and reasoning type questions, for which the translation is not easily understood by Hindi speaking students and is not able to score in paper 2."

The Arvind Verma Committee report which was constituted to examine and suggest if any changes are required in the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination pattern was table recently  in the Parliament and the Government has asked some time to study it.

This has not gone well in both houses of parliament and the opposition members created an uproar over the issue in, as a result the opposition of the upper house walked out. However Home Minister Rajnath Singh has assured that the Government has taken this issue very seriously and is considering every aspect of it.

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