Graduates, post graduates and even PhD holders are among the 2.3 million applicants vying for the post of peon in Uttar Pradesh government secretariat. A record of sorts was created after the U.P. government, which advertised for 368 posts of peon in secretariat, got 2.3 million responses.

The minimum qualification for the post of peon is that the applicant should be a class five pass out and know how to ride a bicycle.

Grabbing the opportunity, opposition parties in unison attacked the SP-led state government over its promise of providing employment to youths in the state.

Of the total 368 posts, 268 are for general category and the rest are for SC, ST and other reserved categories in the age group of 18 to 40 years.

“When we categorized the applications viz-a-viz a qualification, we were surprised to find that 255 doctorates have applied for the job,” a senior secretariat administration official said.

He said that while more than 1.5 lakh graduates have applied for the job, the number of post-graduates is 24,969, he said.

High school or equivalent pass outs comprise the maximum numbers with more than 11.21 lakh applicants as compared to class five pass outs, whose number is 53,426.

Even class 12th job seekers outnumber the minimum qualification with more than 7.5 lakh candidates. While 1,405 candidates are in others category, 2,681 are unclassified.

The officer said that initially it was decided to hold recruitment through interview.

But now, it is planned to hold written examination as well, because screening of such a large number of candidates would an uphill task and take time.

The opposition parties have raised questions over SP’s claims of creating jobs in the state.

“It puts a question mark on the development claims of the SP government. What happened to SP’s promise of providing jobs, when highly qualified people are applying for the post of peon and unemployment rate is so high,” Congress alleged in a statement issued here.

It alleged high-level corruption and nepotism in the recruitments done so far during four years of SP regime.

State BJP chief Laxmi Kant Bajpai said that situation was serious as a large number of posts were vacant in different departments.

He alleged that while the SP government failed to give unemployment allowance, it also failed to provide employment opportunities.

“It is anti-unemployed government,” he alleged.