Amid Covid surge and curbs, Punjab set for 9-day mega job fair

Registrations, open since March 25, will continue till April 18 and each applicant will be allowed maximum five job interviews, which will be held through both physical and online mode.

Battling with a major surge in Covid-19 infections and deaths amid an ongoing second wave, and after ordering a ban on political gatherings, the Congress government in poll-bound Punjab is set to organize nine-day mega job fair to fill “more than 2.5 lakh vacancies in private sector”.

The 7th State Level Mega Job Fair, part of the ruling party’s poll promise of providing employment in every household under ghar ghar rozgar, is scheduled to be held from April 22 to April 30.

Registrations, open since March 25, will continue till April 18 and each applicant will be allowed maximum five job interviews, which will be held through both physical and online mode.

Unlike the pre-Covid arrangement where physical interviews were scheduled in district bureau of employment and enterprises (DBEEs), the respective districts have made arrangements in the field, including at educational institutions, to enable employers interview the candidates in person.

The employers are not restricted to Punjab alone. A number of prospective employers from adjoining Himachal Pradesh have also scheduled physical interviews in locations across Punjab.

Ropar deputy commissioner Sonali Giri said that apart from prospective employers from Punjab, 11 companies from Baddi, Nalagarh and Una in Himchal Pradesh would be participating in the mega job fair to recruit the candidates. Sonali added that few of the companies would be carrying out virtual interviews and remaining would send their officials for physical interviews. She said in her district, three locations each in Ropar, Chamkaur Sahib and Anandpur Sahib have been selected for physical interviews. The DC said said, in addition, three more locations have been selected which are relatively smaller in scale for the interviews. She said all protocol relating to Covid-19 would be adhered to as the sites selected were very spacious and in a given slot only a limited number of candidates would appear for interviews.

Hoshiarpur DC Apneet Riyait too said that companies from Himachal Pradesh have scheduled interviews during the job fair. She said, “Luminous Power Technologies, Crompton Greaves Ltd and Havells, which have factories in Himachal Pradesh, have scheduled interviews in the mega job fair. Besides companies in Punjab including Century Plywood, Coca Cola, Hawkins, and Sonalika Tractors, which has been our biggest employer too have interviews scheduled”.

“Couple of them from Himachal Pradesh are coming for physical interviews. We have selected more venues like one in Dasuya and Garhshankar. We have scheduled interviews day-wise so that there is no rush in the wake of Covid guidelines,” said Riyait.

Amid a surge in the Covid cases in the region, the Himachal Pradesh government, it may be mentioned here, has made it mandatory for travelers from Punjab, Delhi, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh to carry a negative RT-PCR Covid-19 test report after April 16 while entering the hill state.

Punjab Employment Generation, Skill Development and Training director Harpreet Singh Sudan said, “2.5 lakh vacancies have been sourced in 22 districts. Around four venues at least in each district have been selected as suitable venues. The vacancies have been sourced by the DBEEs. On the designated dates, the HR (Human Resource) officials of respective companies will conduct the interviews. Some of them will conduct virtual interviews. It will all depend on employer.”

On recent Covid restrictions, Sudan said, “Covid-19 is a very dynamic situation. When we announced this mega job fair last month, we did not know there would be such restrictions…We have been preparing since March 15… In the light of new protocol, we have ensured that there will not be more than 40 persons for an interview in one given slot. It is all coordinated. And given the restrictions, we will encourage employers to go in for virtual interviews.”

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