The interview round of the Civil Services exam 2019 has resumed today. The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) was in the middle of conducting the interviews when the government decided to impose a lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19. A total of 2,304 candidates have been shortlisted for the interview, which is the last round of selection for the exam.
With gradual lifting of the lockdown, the UPSC has decided to hold the interviews for the remaining candidates from July 20 to July 30 and all the candidates have been suitably informed in advance. In order to address the safety and health concerns of the candidates, expert advisers and staff of the Commission, arrangements have been put in place, the Commission has said.
As train services are not fully functional, the UPSC, as a one-time measure, has decided to reimburse the lowest 'to and fro airfare' to the candidates coming for the interview.
State Governments have been requested to allow the candidates holding e-summon letters for interview to move in/out of the restricted zones for the purpose of attending the same, it said. The Commission is also helping the candidates with their lodging and transport requirements, it added.
The UPSC has made arrangements for candidates at its office. On reaching the Commission, all candidates will be provided a 'sealed kit' consisting of a face mask, face shield, a bottle of sanitizer and hand gloves.
Since the Interview Boards generally comprise of senior advisers, the Commission has taken all precautionary and safety measures for contactless interviews in order to shield the interviewers and the interviewees appropriately, it said.
"The Commission's staff involved in conduct of the interviews will also be equipped with suitable protective gear. Arrangements have been made for regular sanitization of all the rooms, halls, furniture and equipment. Seating arrangement for the candidates at all venues will ensure safe physical distancing. Protocol/ guidelines to be followed by the candidates for appearing in the interview have been communicated to them," the UPSC has said.