Education minister pulled up for his statements on unfair practices by parents and students
GN Staff | March 20, 2015
The Patna High Court on Friday slammed as "very shameful" Bihar Education Minister PK Shahi's statement that cheating-free exams were not possible in the state. On Thursday, Shahi said that cheating-free examinations were not possible in Bihar as photographs showing guardians scaling through a school wall to deliver chits to their wards writing the Bihar School Examination Board's Class X examination at Mahnar in Vaishali district went viral on social networking sites.
The court directed Bihar Police chief PK Thakur to ensure free and fair examination across the state. The court was hearing a petition filed by a senior lawyer against Shahi's remarks and expressed its displeasure over the minister's statement. The case will come up for further hearing on March 27.
Friday evening reports say that exams have been cancelled at four centres from where the pictures of cheating appear in social media.
More than 1.4 million students are appearing in these exams amid reports of mass copying and cheating.
Shahi on Thursday had said the government could not stop the unethical practices on its own. "Parents and students will have to cooperate with law-enforcing agencies (for fair examinations to take place)," he said.
The examinations commenced on March 17, and reports of rampant use of unfair means have been pouring in, especially from Vaishali and Bhojpur districts.
Shahi said over 14 lakh students are taking the examination and at least two to three relatives of each examinee are helping them use unfair means. "Such people thus number 40 to 50 lakh. You tell us what the government can do. Should the government give orders to shoot them?" he asked.
The minister said orders have been given to the DMs and SPs to conduct free and fair examinations. When pointed out that even policemen were seen helping students, he said, "Maybe their relatives are also taking the examinations." The government won't be taking action to stop the use of unfair means even in the remaining exams, he said.
Meanwhile, chief minister Nitish Kumar took to Facebook to explain his government's stand on social media pictures.
"The pictures do not tell the whole truth," Nitish wrote in Hindi on the social networking site. "Some images of students cheating cannot undermine the talents of the students of the state," he said.
"I would like to tell the parents, teachers and guardians of the students that they are doing a disservice to the state by such actions. The certificate that you get through such malpractices will not help you in the long run," he wrote.
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