December 25 did not only mean a shocker by the Prime Minister of India who visited Pakistan without any information to anyone but also brought to light the lousy and shocking examination routine in Jammu and Kashmir. The Jammu and Kashmir Services Selection Board (JKSSB) had to cancel the examination for government jobs in various departments at two centres when cases of cheating and use of mobile phones during the exam became publicly known.
In an official release by JKSSB, over Eighty-nine thousand students had appeared for the exam which saw a little over over sixty percent attendance across the state. Shockingly, the JKSSB had to cancel the examination at two centres – Luthra College of Education in Talab Tillo and another at Paloura and this was a result of complaints of cheating and use of internet on mobile phone right during the exam.
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There is a meeting scheduled tomorrow, December 27 where the Board would decide about the fate of the candidates affected by the cancellation of the examination. There is widespread speculation that the exam may have to be cancelled completely after becoming the centre of controversy.
Multiple photos circulated on social media websites all day yesterday and though the images cannot be used as concrete proof, eyewitnesses bemoaned the mess at the Luthra College of Education examination centre and also confirmed that there were some “miscreants” who even tore the question papers.
“Some aspirants had even kept their mobile phones with them during the exam and no frisking was done before the start of the examination. Some miscreants created an uproar and tore question papers that led to chaos and mess at the examination centre,” an aspirant said, adding that some aspirants managed to take away answer scripts outside the exam centres in the melee as quoted in the Tribune.
“No one was there to stop them. The staff deployed at the exam centre watched helplessly. Some aspirants were busy searching for answers on the mobile phone internet outside the examination hall,” he said.
The exam was cancelled at these centres only after some students clicked the images of students cheating and uploaded them on social media.
Dev Lata, JKSSB chairperson, said they had cancelled the examination at two centres following complaints of cheating and use of mobile internet.
“Some miscreants disturbed the examination and tore question papers. It led to disturbance at the entire centre, affecting the examination at another centre near it,” she said, adding that around 1,000 candidates were writing their exam in these two centres.
“The Board will hold a meeting on Monday (December 27) and take a sympathetic view on the candidates who suffered because of the cancellation of examination. It was a mammoth exercise as nearly 90,000 candidates were appearing in today’s examination across the state,” the chairperson said. She claimed that the examination remained peaceful across the state.
To a query, she said the Board was yet to take a decision on an inquiry into the incident. “There is another examination scheduled for tomorrow. Our first preference is to avoid any such incident. We will take a decision on holding an inquiry into the incident after the completion of the exam,” she said.