Accusing Modi government of “systematically denigrating” institutions one by one, Congress on Thursday demanded the sacking of HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar and CBSE chairman Anita Karwal to fix accountability over leakage of the Class 12 board examination Economics paper and Class 10 Maths examination.
“Coincidentally, the officials in key positions at both SSC, Ashim Khurana and CBSE, Anita Karwal are handpicked IAS officers of Prime Minister from the time he was Gujarat Chief Minister,” read a joint statement issued by AICC media in-charge Randeep Surjewala, the joint secretary in-charge for the NSUI Ruchi Gupta and AICC national media panelist Ragini Nayak.
“Since the Modi government came to power, for almost 2 years, the post of the CBSE chairperson was kept vacant under the then HRD Minister, Smriti Irani. After continuous criticism, RK Chaturvedi was appointed as chairperson only on July 27, 2016 for a tenure up till July 27, 2020. Then Anita Karwal, earlier CEO Gujarat, was appointed as the CBSE chairperson on September 8, 2017,” the statement said. “Instead of taking extreme care in conducting the examinations, Karwal was busy camping in Ahmedabad, promoting her book on mountaineering.”
Asserting that CBSE exams paper leak had exposed the capture of highest academic institutions by the ‘Exam Mafia’ under the watch of the Modi government, it further alleged: “First they nurtured the ‘Vyapam Virus’ in Madhya Pradesh, then they spread the same patented virus throughout the country in the multi layered SSC Scam and now they have not even spared our students.”
“It is absolutely shocking and heart rending that the future of 24 lakh students is in severe jeopardy as the Modi government officially admits that 2 CBSE papers-- Economics examination paper for Class XII leaked on March 26 and Mathematics examination Paper for Class X boards leaked on March 28, almost an hour before the students sat for the exam,” it stated, adding that “it may just turn out to be the tip of the iceberg as multiple news reports and social media stories on how the Biology, Chemistry and English papers have also been leaked are also surfacing now. Despite registration of an FIR and an enquiry, shockingly; CBSE has admitted the leak of 3 exam papers.”
It further alleged multiple instances of bungling and malfeasance in CBSE under Modi government: “There were errors in the evaluation of Class XII board exam papers in the year 2017. The practice of inflating marks in board examinations. Also, there was alleged setting of tough questions in the NEET exam in regional languages. (MPs from Bengal and Tamil Nadu had complained about the nature of questions being asked to students taking the NEET in their mother tongue).”
Congress also raised the following questions:
- Why did the HRD Ministry/CBSE deliberately forgo the established practice of different questions across 3 sets of paper for students in each exam, thereby preventing cheating, duplications and paper leaks? Why the HRD Ministry/CBSE did instead resorted to setting one paper with identical questions across the country?
- Why did the HRD Ministry/CBSE do away with the practice of dividing the country into 4 zones, aimed at further preventing copying, cheating and leaking of papers?
- Why did the HRD Minister cut short the tenure of previous CBSE chairperson to replace him with a person of the choice of the Prime Minister from his days as Chief Minister of Gujarat? Why did the new chairperson not take any steps to curb the ‘Exam Mafia’ or cancel the examinations despite receiving the leaked papers? Why were HRD Ministry and CBSE living in constant denial, befooling the parents and hardworking students in the process?
- How is an ‘Exam Mafia’ flourishing under the watch of HRD Ministry and Modi government? Hasn’t the nexus being exposed by the very FIR registered with Delhi Police?
- Why are questionable practices like errors in evaluation of board exams, inflation of marks and other malpractices continuing in CBSE in an unchecked and an unregulated manner?
- Why has CBSE then been assigned the all-important task of conducting NEET Exams/IIT Entrance? Are these exams also plagued by similar irregularities and leakages?
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