Employment October 27, 2020
Denied post due to disability, Purna Sunthari Murugesan, IAS, moves court
Visually impaired IAS aspirant Purna Sunthari Murugesan who cracked UPSC exams with a top rank is being denied an IAS post owing to her disability. Purna Sunthari has already filed a case. She has ample support from disability rights groups from across India.
Madurai based- Purna Sunthari Murugesan, 26 years old, is an IAS aspirant who cracked UPSC exams in August. She grabbed headlines after her splendid win. In spite of being visually impaired, Purna Sunthari could beat obstacles to crack one of the toughest exams in the country. This youngster is now in a tough spot as officials are going to post her in Indian Revenue Services (IRS) even though she qualifies for Indian Administrative Services (IAS) with her 286th rank win. Reportedly, the decision comes owing to Purna Sunthari’s disability. She has now filed a case with the Central Administrative Tribunal and is hopeful of getting justice.
A victim of discrimination
Purna Sunthari’s is not an isolated case. A few years back, visually impaired IAS aspirants who had scored extremely well were denied admissions into the services stating that they are inefficient for posts.
Murugesan, Purna Sunthari’s father, is hopeful that his daughter will get justice. “My daughter is currently being trained at the Mussoorie training center. She has filed a case and the tribunal has agreed to come up with a reply by 20 January. She has all the qualifications to be an IAS officer. We are fully confident that she is going to win the case”, he says.
TMN Deepak, founder of Tamil Nadu-based 3 December Movement to empower disabled people tweeted, “What else has to happen for a successful visually impaired woman candidate @upsc ? Is it not a blatant discrimination using disability as premise for not giving IAS? Why do you call as divyang jan? Is that to discriminate us? Pained to see your cold action!! #discriminativeupsc.”
Support from disability rights groups
Muralidharan Vishwanath, General Secretary, National Platform for the Rights of the Disabled (NPRD) says, “Purna Sunthari qualifies for IAS with her excellent rank. So it is unfortunate that she is being put into IRS. We are going to support her since she has already filed a case. Such incidents have happened before too”.
S Namubrajan is the General Secretary of Tamil Nadu Association for the Rights of All Types of Differently Abled and Caregivers (TARATDAC).
“Purna Sunthari also has the privilege of getting admitted with her OBC certificate. So in all means, it is clear that she must be given the IAS, but concerned departments are not ready to do it. It is a clear case of discrimination and injustice towards a person with disability. Visually impaired people have been included in civil services since the year 2011 after demand and struggle by the NPRD. So that means in spite of strict disability acts and government orders, Purna Sunthari is discriminated. It is condemnable”, he says,
- When the going gets tough, Purna Sunthari Murugesan, visually impaired UPSC rank holder, gets going!
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