DLR takes up 'eligibility' issue of MLIS candidates with Government

The Directorate of Libraries and Research (DLR) has taken up with the government the “eligibility” issue of the MLIS candidates for the posts of librarian, junior librarian and library assistants advertised by the JK Service Selection Board (SSB) a few days ago.

The move comes amid hue and cry raised by the candidates possessing Masters in Library and Information Science (MLIS) degrees after they were not held eligible for the posts. An official in the DRL said that they had taken up the matter with the administrative department.

“We received grievances of the MLIS candidates and also a communication was sent from the grievance cell of the Lieutenant Governor’s office about the issue. We have forwarded the grievance to the administrative department with recommendations that an executive order may kindly be issued holding the candidates with MLIS eligible for the post,” he said.

The official said the posts were referred and advertised as per the recruitment rules in vogue since 1989.

Despite the advancement in the academics and introduction of new courses in the universities since, the department has not amended the recruitment rules over the years.

“As per the current recruitment rules, the eligibility was BA, B Sc and B Com with a certificate course in library sciences. The directorate and Jammu and Kashmir Service Selection Board (JKSSB) are helpless in this case because the posts have been notified as per the present recruitment rules,” he said.

The official said that the directorate had also submitted a draft of new recruitment rules to the administrative department and requested the government for making amendments in the recruitment rules.

“It is understood that certificate course is a diploma and MLIS is a full-fledged degree which is higher than a diploma. We have sought amendments not only for the rules framed for the posts of librarian but also for other technical posts,” the official said.

As already reported by Greater Kashmir, the University of Kashmir (KU) in a letter to Secretary JKSSB has said that MLIS degree done after graduation was an integrated two-year Master’s degree in Library and Information Science approved by the University Grants Commission (UGC) and the degree was equivalent for all purposes.

Around 40 students graduate from KU’s MLIS department every year after completing the two-year MLIS course.

“Hundreds of candidates have passed out from KU with MLIS degrees during the past many years but majority are not considered eligible for the posts of librarian,” the candidates said.

Secretary to the Government in the Department of Culture, SarmadHafeez told Greater Kashmir that the recruitment rules were already prescribed in the department and amendments needed should have been made before notifying the post.

“But I will still check with the department and see if the MLIS candidates can get some help,” he said.