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from daijiworld's special correspondent

Panaji, Aug 19: The fate of around 1,200 government employees, including 600 guarding vital democratic establishments in the state, hangs in balance as senior state minister casting doubts on the recruitment procedure adopted in their cases.
Employed through state government-promoted Goa Labour Recruitment and Employment Society (GLRES) these employees are sitting with fingers crossed.

``The society is bogus.. How can we employ government servants from such a society which is not a government venture," said deputy chief minister Dr Wilfred D'Souza briefing presspersons on Friday evening.

The society, which was conceived during BJP-regime in 2001, employs people on contract basis and recruits them at various government departments. Basically, the society caters to the security need of vital democratic establishments like legislative assembly, Ministerial block, secretariat, Kala Academy besides various government offices.

Official figures revealed that of the 1,200 persons employed by society in various government offices, 600 are watchmen.

"How can we employ government servants from any society? We need to give equal opportunity to everyone before employing them in government services," Dr D'Souza stated.
The issue of existence of this society came to light in the wake of indefinite strike by lifeguards, who were provided in the government service, through the society. "We need lifeguards but we will employ them by adopting a proper recruitment procedure," the deputy chief minister, who is also a tourism minister said.

The promoters of this society, however, said that the venture conceived during BJP regime, and currently headed by leader of opposition Manohar Parrikar, was an attempt to curb commission agents in the government system.

"The society is not bogus. It was formed with the good interest of avoiding commission agents from entering into the government system. The government employees recruited on contract basis were exploited by the commission agents," stated Subhash Salkar,GLRES's adviser.

It is government supported venture and there is a cabinet decision in this regard to make it mandatory for any government office to take contract labour through this society, Salkar said.

He agreed that if government takes another decision to nullify the society and take up fresh recruitment, employment of around 1,200 people would be in danger.


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