On 19 August 2020, the Union Cabinet approved the proposal to set up a National Recruitment Agency (NRA) that will be responsible for conducting the Common Eligibility Test (CET). The CET would act as a preliminary test for selection into public sector banks, and non gazetted posts in the central government.
The government first proposed the national recruitment agency in the union budget of 2020. According to the proposal that passed on Wednesday by the Union Cabinet there will be only a single entrance examination for all non gazetted- group b and group C posts and all the public sector banks. This decision would come as a relief for the aspirants because unlike earlier, where job seekers had to apply for a separate exam for different government exams they have to appear just for one. After qualifying the CET candidates would be eligible for applying to any recruitment agencies for further process. The CET score would be valid for three years, during which the candidate can apply for jobs in different sectors depending on their aptitude and interest.
National Recruitment Agency will conduct a Common Eligibility Test for
- Institute of banking personnel selection (IBPS)
- Railway Recruitment Boards (RRBs)
- Staff Selection Commission (SSC)
C Chandramouli, secretary to the government said in the cabinet meeting that there are more than 20 recruitment agencies in the central government. But as of now, we are conducting a common recruitment process for three agencies only. In the course of time, we will extend this process to all recruitment agencies, and thus all recruitment agencies will have a common eligibility test.
Nirmala Sitharaman, Finance Minister, mentioned in the Union Budget that the National Recruitment agency would be
and will conduct Common Eligibility Test for selection to government jobs.
The Union cabinet said that this score could also be open for other public or private recruitment agencies if they wish to use it for their recruitment process. Over time the CET score would be shared by every recruitment agency in the central government, public sector undertaking, private sector, state government, and union territories. In case this happens, this would help the organisations to save the cost and time spent on the recruitment process.
Prime minister Narendra Modi said that the NRA would be a boon to the young generation. He said that the Common Eligibility Test would eliminate multiple tests and save time and resources of both the job seekers and the recruitment agency.
Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said that Common Eligibility Test would be a benefit to the job-seekers.
Union Minister Jitendra Singh said that the cabinet’s decision of setting up a National Recruitment Agency to conduct Common Eligibility Test for preliminary selection to various government vacancies is a revolutionary reform. And this step will bring ease in recruitment, and it will bring ease of living for the job aspirants. He further added that it would provide a level playing field for everyone, particularly for the economically deprived people who cannot afford travelling to multiple centres. Youth living in distant areas with difficulty to reach different centres and women candidates who are unable to travel and stay due to several constraints on them.