‘Lower Than Expected’ applications received as Deadline for Lateral Entry Into Civil Services Ends


The number of applications for the lateral entry into centrally sponsored IAS-level jobs could merely crossed 6000 mark as the deadline for entries end on 30th of July. Senior officials in the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) said, “We hoped for more interests but, with just over 6,000 applications, the number is lower than expected as one lakh applications were unanimously expected.

With the idea of bringing in “fresh ideas and new approaches” to governance and also to augment workforce, government

Opened the doors of the bureaucracy for private sector professionals, and on June 10 invited applications for 10 Joint Secretary-level posts through lateral entry as opposed to the UPSC examinations. This move was initiated after government’s policy think tank, Niti Aayog suggested the same.

Joint Secretaries are senior management in the government and lead policy making as well as implementation of various programmes and schemes of the department assigned to them. The joint secretary post is usually filled through the competitive exams conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).

The government notification said that candidates having expertise in specific areas of revenue, financial services, economic affairs, agriculture, road transport and highways, shipping, environment and forests, new and renewable energy, civil aviation and commerce can apply for the posts.

While candidates from state governments and Central or state public sector undertakings will be appointed on deputation, the candidates from private sector will be appointed on a contract basis, the notification said.

The June 10 advertisement called for applications from those working at “comparable levels in private sector companies, consultancy organisations, international/multinational organisations with a minimum of 15 years’ experience”. The lateral entrants would have three to five-year tenures, according to the advertisement.

The government has cited examples of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and ex-deputy chairman of the erstwhile Planning Commission, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, as the examples of those who joined the government through the “lateral entry” process at various ranks.

The ‘lateral entry’ route will bypass the UPSC system under which 15 percent seats are reserved for the Scheduled Castes, 7.5 percent for the Scheduled Tribes and 27 percent for the Other Backward Castes in the Indian Administrative Services.