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CBSE in the leak quagmire

CBSE in the leak quagmire
The leak of question papers of Class X and XII examinations has once again put a big question mark on the fairness of CBSE examinations. Shocked and angry, students and parents across the country protested the failure of CBSE to maintain the sanctity of the examination system. Sympathising with the students who will have to take the examinations all over again in the two papers whose question papers were leaked, the Congress party demanded the resignation of Education Minister Prakash Javadekar and CBSE Chairperson Anita Karwal. Javadekar said he understood the agony and frustration of students and admitted that the incident has dented the clean image of CBSE. He said he is in talks with foreign counterparts and studying the examination systems in other countries to adopt the best practices. Nearly 16 lakh students will have to take the examination of the two cancelled papers afresh. With the advent of social media and document sharing applications such as Whatsapp, the sharing of question papers once they are leaked can be very fast and can reach far and wide in no time. So, the CBSE may never know how many students had access to the leaked question papers. Coaching institutes promise their students good marks in the examination and in a situation when the question papers are doing the round on Whatsapp before the examination, it is possible that some of the coaching institutes might have taken interest in the entire affair and may have had access to them. However, what is surprising is the lack of preparedness of CBSE in ensuring that its question papers are not leaked. It seems the Board had not prepared itself enough for the eventuality or it took the entire examination system too lightly.
But the student community all across the country reacted with anger and frustration on the leak of CBSE question papers of Class X mathematics and Class XII economics and the decision to conduct the examinations afresh. The students have staged protests at many places in the country and a group of students who were protesting at Delhi's Jantar Mantar claimed that all CBSE papers were leaked before the examination. They claimed that the leaked papers were sold for Rs 2,000 each. According to police sources, the leaked papers were sold for Rs 30,000 to Rs 200. The Delhi police has raided nearly 15 places in Delhi including coaching centres where the evidence of paper leak were searched. The Delhi police have questioned 25 people including 18 students and five coaching centre owners. But the police have not been able to catch the kingpin of the racket.
In Jharkhand's Chatra, six people including students and coaching centre owners have been taken into custody. The police are examining the chain of phone numbers to reach the source of Whatsapp messages that carried the leaked question papers. So far, the police have obtained 40 mobile numbers of which 24 numbers belong to Class X students and 10 numbers belong to Class XII students. A certain Pulkit Sharma has admitted to have received the question papers from a person called Miraz. As per the police sources, the racket could be a handiwork of some gangs based in Sonipat and Bulandsahar. The police are keeping a watch on these gangs. The police are also investigating if some influential people are involved in the racket to leak the question papers and coaching centre owners could just be trying to profit from the situation. The students protesting at Jantar Mantar claimed that all the papers were leaked and not just Class X mathematics and Class XII economics papers. They also claimed that CBSE staffers could be involved in the racket. Some students claimed that all the papers were available before the examination and they were selling for Rs 2,000 each. They claimed that the same question papers which were circulating on Whatsapp groups have come in the examination. At Jantar Mantar, some students were holding placards with messages: 'Stop playing with the life of students and retest the system'.
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