Odisha PSC

Odisha administration in spotlight

OMC Receives Clearance for Kodingamali Bauxite Mine Development

Odisha Mining Corporation, which is run by the state government, has received a forest clearance by the environment ministry for the development of a bauxite mine in the state of Odisha. The purpose of this mine is to help bring relief to the refinery in Lanjigarh. This is a refinery that doesn’t have too many ores and needs to have raw material imported, even though they’re located in a state that is filled with minerals.

OMC already has a mine that is positioned on the Kodingamali plateau of the state. It has an 81 million metric ton reserve which can generate around 3 million metric tons annually. Back in late September of 2017, OMC received a note from the environmental ministry that granted them permission for the diversion of forestry, 435 hectares in size to be exact, reported The Economic Times. This received a lot of opposition from local villagers and concerned environmentalists. Despite this, the mine is expected to get an environmental clearance.

The mine was originally granted an environmental clearance back in 2008. This was a point in time when an alumina refinery about 3 kilometers away was going to be established but plans for this refinery eventually got canceled. Now, OMC needs to have their environmental clearance amended because they are planning to construct a new road from the mine. This road will make it easier for trucks to transport material from the mine rather than having to use a conveyor pipeline for this purpose. Once the road is completed, it is expected to allow 800 trucks to transport as much as 3.7 million metric tons of material annually.

According to the managing director of OMC, the amendment to the environmental clearance is already recommended by the appraisal committee and it is currently in process. Many local villagers who are opposed to the clearance had previously given their approval when they thought a refinery was going to be built nearby. This change of plan has them less than thrilled.

The future of 76 OAS candidate took for granted

On 1 April 1949, Odisha Public Service Commission was formed which is an agency of state government for conducting Civil Services Examination. However, it was reported by the candidates that Odisha Public Service Commission was not fulfilling its responsibility properly in conducting examinations. Delays in the final results were seen because of which OAS came under huge criticism. Candidates ultimately had to raise their voices when the final result of 2011 was declared after four years gap in February 2016. It was reported by the public that, Odisha Public Service Commission played with the fate of candidate by taking it for granted. Moreover, after the exams were held, its result was not announced by OPSC for almost nine months.

After the announcement of results in 2011, 76 candidates made it to Odisha Civil Services merit list but their future was at stake as the decision regarding their appointment was not decided for almost 10 months by the State government. In contrast to the candidates of 2015 who were placed in their positions, the 76 candidates of 2011 remained unlucky and had to suffer for no reason, reported The Indian Express.

According to some sources, 494 posts of different categories which come under Odisha Civil Services Examination were issued by the government in the form of advertisement during the year 2011, for attracting more candidates. In total, 418 aspirants got selected for various posts in that year, however, during last year’s February their names were recommended for the posting. Also, because of the Supreme Court’s ruling on reservation policy, no clarification was seen and because of this, the 76 posts previously reserved for Socially Economically Backward Caste (SEBC) were held back.

It was said by the apex court that 50% would be the limit for the reservation, however, the reservation for SEBC would be 12.5%. Previously, 27% for SEBC reservation was advertised by the State Government. However, despite the orders of Odisha Administrative Tribunal for announcing the merit list of 76 selected candidates to OPSC, it went to the high court and denounced it.

Later on 17th May, after sustained tribunal orders of the high court on 1st March, the candidate’s merit list was announced by the OPSC. Despite this, the candidates were still left neglected because of the procrastinating behavior of the State Government. AK Meena, who is secretary of General Administration Department provided an assurance regarding the posting of candidates before next financial year, by telling about the progress regarding the processing of their files. This gave them a hope for their futures.