Those of you who didn’t believe in miracles, this one is for them – For the first time in the history of Bihar, 600 school students were expelled for CHEATING on their matriculation exams. I know you are taken aback. Cheating and ‘getting caught in Bihar’ are two opposite sides of the same coin. But, this was something decided on the heavens and consummated on the Earth!
Although the scenario is quite commonplace in Bihar, the incident received widespread attention when images and video footage showing daredevil parents and friends of students scaling the walls of a 4-storey buildings and supplying cheat sheets to the students went viral on the Internet. As a result, the education authorities had to expel (with a heavy heart since they have to return the bribe now) 600 high school students.
P. K. Shahi, Bihar’s education minister inferred to the situation saying, “”It’s virtually impossible to conduct fair examinations without the cooperation of parents”. He elaborated: It is impossible to monitor 1.4 million 10th graders taking tests and the 6 million parents who accompany the students to their exam centers.
Well, surely that is quite a huge figure. And, I don’t want to judge the ministerial knowledge or abilities of Mr. Shahi, but more that 6 lakh students appeared for their matriculation exams in states like West Bengal and Orissa. Do the math!
Short clarification here: I’m not asking you to do the calculation, Mr. Shahi.
When asked about what the state police was doing who were posted at the schools to take care of the smooth running of the exams (which they were doing effectively had fate not intervened), they said, “we can’t use force to drive away the parents”. Sounds like you guys have never done that before.
Well, we all know how Bihar and its systems work!
The situation was seen as an opportunity for the opposition parties in the state and they wasted no time in coming down on the roads complaining about the bad governance of the dispensation. They started stopping trains, blocking highways, burning tyres, staging dharnas and the usual.
However, this doesn’t make the other states cheat-proof. Bihar is just a dynamic example.
But, the change has begun!
State education authorities have canceled another four examination centers when reports of large-scale cheating was received. It has also been declared that students caught cheating could be barred from taking the exam for up to three years. Okay, hang on guys! You’re going at warp speed. Before it was publicized, you didn’t care at all. Now, that is has come out in the open, don’t just start creating ridiculous laws and rules out of panic.
This can be easily corrected by taking one step at a time. The strict move has already discouraged the practice, but there is still a long way to go. And, I truly believe that my kids will not have the same idea or picture of Bihar, which I used to have while I was growing up.