Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Sunday said that there will be an online Common Eligibility Test (CET) for filling up non-gazetted posts from this year. The Minister of State for Personnel said this while chairing the joint meeting of all the six autonomous bodies under the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) at North Block here. The exam will be conducted before the year end by the National Recruitment Agency (NRA). It will be a game-changer, providing ease of recruitment to the job aspirants with at least one exam centre in each district of the country, Singh said. The CET is a path-breaking reform carried out by the DoPT to bring about “ease of recruitment” for young job aspirants and it will prove to be a major boon for the youth, especially those living in far-flung and remote areas. Singh said the historic reform will provide a level playing field to all the candidates, regardless of his or her background or socio-economic status. There will also be a huge benefit to women and ‘divyang’ candidates and for those who find it financially unviable to appear for multiple tests by travelling to multiple centres, a statement issued by the Personnel Ministry said. Initially, the test will be conducted in 12 languages, including Hindi and English. Later, it will be conducted in all the languages mentioned in the 8th Schedule of the Constitution. Singh said Prime Minister Narendra Modi introduced the “whole of government” concept which has not only removed silos but also facilitated an integrated holistic approach to governance. The context and concept of governance are undergoing reorientation to suit the current needs and requirements of the 21st century India, he said. The review exercise of autonomous bodies functioning under central ministries and departments is of utmost importance in view of furthering the aim of “minimum government, maximum governance”, efficient use of public funds and reducing financial burden on the government exchequer, besides making the governance people-friendly. Heads of all the six autonomous bodies gave a detailed presentation about their mandate, work, budget and aims and objectives during the meeting, the statement said. These institutes include NRA, Indian Institute of Public Administration (IIPA), Civil Services Officers Institute (CSOI), Grih Kalyan Kendras (GKK), Central Civil Services Cultural and Sports Board (CCSCSB) and Kendriya Bhandar (registered under Multi-State Cooperative Societies Act), it said. Singh directed senior officials to explore the possibility of the merger of GKK and CCSCSB due to the overlapping mandate, and aims and objectives. He asked the officials to come out with a feasibility report within a month. The minister also directed the Kendriya Bhandar to open more outlets at centres of GKK and IIPA for increasing sales and cost-cutting. Singh asked the Kendriya Bhandar to go the whole hog to promote its unique product of organic pulses and build a brand for the same. He also lauded Kendriya Bhandar officials for achieving 500 per cent growth in sales from Rs 750 crore in 2017-18 to Rs 4,000 crore in 2021-22.