Kolkata: The West Bengal BJP has demanded a statement from state Education Minister Bratya Basu on the recent incidents of sharing of class 10 board examination question papers on social media by students.
Images of question papers of Bengali, English and History were clicked on mobile phones by students at centres and shared on social media on three consecutive examination dates this month.
Senior BJP leader Shankar Ghosh alleged that the entire handling of the issue by the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education (WBBSE) “is faulty”, stating that while officials responsible are being shielded, candidates are being punished, ruining their future.
The board has disqualified a total of 17 candidates, of whom 16 are from Malda district, from the class 10 board examinations this year for sharing question papers on social media after the commencement of examinations.
“We want an official statement from the education minister on the situation. While the board has been arbitrarily disqualifying candidates on the charge of taking photographs on mobile phones without giving them a chance to defend themselves or disprove allegations against them, the officials responsible for security at exam centres are left untouched,” Ghosh, the Siliguri MLA, told reporters here on Tuesday.
“The future of young students is being ruined… The board has claimed that the QR code embossed on the question paper can be deciphered from an image clicked on a mobile phone. But what is the veracity of the technology? Which organisation has given the QR code? Did the board float any tender for such technology? Who got the tender? Was the tender given in a fair transparent way?” Ghosh questioned.
The senior BJP legislator alleged that the board has lost its independence and is “controlled by the ruling Trinamool Congress”.
WBBSE president Ramanuj Ganguly had earlier alleged that a conspiracy is being hatched to “defame the state government and the board, and children are being used as tools to disrupt the examination process”.
He said the “conspirators have become frustrated as fool-proof QR code technology has helped track the wrongdoers inside the exam centres and every attempt to stall the exams has been foiled”.
Ganguly, however, said the invigilators and venue supervisors at the exam centres, are teachers and non-teaching staffers and not trained security personnel, which enabled candidates to discreetly bring mobile phones to the examination centres.
Ganguly could not be contacted for comments on the BJP MLA’s allegations.
Over 9,23,000 candidates are writing their papers at 2,675 centres across the state.