The government announcement in an attempt to mollify those agitating against giving prominence to English and weightage to those with engineering and management background was made in Parliament after opposition parties in both the Houses created an uproar over the issue.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who returned after two-day trip to Nepal, met with senior ministers Rajnath Singh (Home), Arun Jaitley (Finance) and Jitendra Singh (MoS, Personnel) and got a briefing on the issue and the latest developments related to it.
The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) will issue a notification to reflect the changes announced by the government which the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will implement.
"Government is of the opinion that in the civil services preliminary examination, Paper-II, the marks of the question section on 'English Language comprehension skills' should not be included for gradation or merit," Singh said seeking to mollify the agitating candidates.
In a brief statement, Singh said, "Candidates, who appeared in civil services examination 2011, may be given one more attempt in 2015."
Parliament has witnessed repeated uproar and several adjournments in the past few days over the issue.
However, the government's statement was rejected by the protesters who demanded complete scrapping of the CSAT.
"We are not satisfied with Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh's speech in Lok Sabha regarding CSAT. We demand complete scrapping of CSAT. We have decided to continue our fight...," Pawan, an UPSC aspirant who has been leading the protest, said.
Pawan said this was not what the protesters have been demanding. "We never asked the BJP-led government to modify CSAT pattern. Instead, our demand is to abolish this test for the welfare of lakhs of students who had studied in Hindi medium," he added.
The civil services preliminary examination will be held as scheduled on August 24 with the changes announced by government in Parliament today including non-inclusion of English marks in gradation of candidates.
The move comes despite demands by some protesting students to postpone the preliminary exam until the new pattern was adopted by the UPSC.
The examination will be held as per schedule and the UPSC, which conducts the prestigious test, will incorporate all the changes announced by the government today in Parliament, official sources said.
There are two compulsory papers of 200 marks each in the civil services preliminary examination. These papers are also known as CSAT I and CSAT II.
The CSAT-II paper carries questions on comprehension, interpersonal skills including communication skills, logical reasoning and analytical ability, decision-making and problem- solving, general mental ability, basic numeracy, and English language comprehension skills (of Class X level).
The CSAT pattern was implemented from 2011.
The civil services examination is conducted in three stages -- preliminary, main and interview -- to choose candidates for Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS) among others.
The UPSC has started issuing admit cards to the candidates for the August 24 preliminary exam.