CBSE class 10, class 12 paper leaks: Of ‘breakthrough’ and contradictions – decoding the probe so far

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New Delhi | Updated: April 2, 2018 4:39:52 PM

CBSE Class 10, 12 paper leak: The police have claimed a breakthrough in its ongoing probe into the leak of class 10 Mathematics and class 12 Economics papers that happened during the board exams conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education.

cbse, cbse paper leak, cbse exam probe, cbse leak probe, cbse class 12th paper leak, cbse class 10 paper leak, Central Board of Secondary Education, cbse top decelopmentsCBSE exam paper leak probe: Despite claims of a breakthrough, there are still several loose ends that the police are yet to connect.

CBSE Class 10, 12 paper leak: The police have claimed a breakthrough in its ongoing probe into the leak of class 10 Mathematics and class 12 Economics papers that happened during the board exams conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education. The police have arrested three accused in the matter for their alleged involvement in the leak of the Economics paper at the Mother Khazani Convent School in Delhi’s Bawana. An official of the CBSE has also been suspended for ‘laxity’ in his duty. When asked about links to the latter, the three accused said that they had no links with the official.

Despite claims of a breakthrough, there are still several loose ends that the police are yet to connect. A couple of things stand out to this effect. First, the three arrested so far by the police — Mother Khazani Convent School teachers Rishabh (29) and Rohit (26) and private coaching centre tutor Tauqeer (26) — relate to the class 12th paper leak and there is little known about the progress of the probe into the leak of the class 10 Mathematics paper. Secondly, there is no clarity on where the leaks originated from, meaning that while the distribution of the leaked paper through Whatsapp has been established, there is little known of the extent to which the leak may have had an impact.

And of course, there is the question of where accountability needs to be fixed. Where does the buck stop? Neither the HRD minister nor the CBSE chief have faced any action. And going by the arrests and claims of breakthrough, one wonders how the papers could have found a way from the CBSE strong rooms to the possession of some school teachers and a coaching centre tutor. The first case related to the leak of Economics question paper was lodged on March 27, while the other pertaining to the leak of Mathematics paper was lodged on March 28, following a complaint by the CBSE’s regional director. There have also been flip-flops by the CBSE over the timing of its knowledge of the leak.

Meanwhile, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) postponed the Class 12 and Class 10 examinations that were scheduled to take place today in the state of Punjab. This step has been taken by the board, following the request of the state government in view of the ‘Bharat Bandh’. The Board in a statement issued last night said, “Taking cognisance of the letter of the director general (school education), the CBSE decided to postpone all class 12 and 10 examinations scheduled for April 2 , 2018 in the state of Punjab.” It added, “Exams will carry on as per schedule in UT of Chandigarh and rest of the country.”

From admission of guilt to arrest and claims of brerakthrough, here are the top developments in the CBSE papers leak so far:

1. The board filed two complaints with the police regarding the leak. The first FIR was registered on March 27, a day after the Economics paper. In its second FIR, the board stated that the sender had, in the mail, requested the Board to cancel the exam claiming that the paper was leaked. “The e-mail contained 12 JPG attachments of handwritten question papers for Mathematics. The sender claimed that the Mathematics paper was leaked on WhatsApp. He also requested: ‘please cancel tomorrow Maths paper’,” states the FIR.

While the complaint clearly stated that the board had information of the leak prior to the examination, no action was taken. What was more confounding was that the CBSE chief, in a media address later, stated facts that were contrary to what was mentioned in the FIRs.

2. On March 30, CBSE chief said that the mail regarding the class 10 Maths paper leak received a night before the Mathematics paper did not contain the leaked paper, which is why they did not cancel the paper. She said, “However, the next day we received a lot of emails from students looking at which the police also decided that the papers indeed leaked the day before. This is why we took the decision for a retest only later.”

3. While the future of the students has gone for a toss, the board and the police are yet to disclose facts related to Class 10 Mathematics paper. The board has still not talked about the same and how it reached the WhatsApp groups. Moreover, the class 10 students are still in a quandary over their re-examination, if any. All that the CBSE has said is that re-tests will be held in July, if required. Also, there have been conflicting reports on the conclusions drawn over the extent of the Maths paper leak. While some reports suggested that the police have concluded that the leak was limited to Delhi, there are others who question the assertion considering that the papers had found their way to Whatsapp and gauging their extent to be limited to a particular region could be far-fetched.

4. As far as the Class 12th Economics paper is concerned, it is known that teachers of the Mother Khazani Convent School were involved in the leak, but the question remains the same. If the board knew of the leak prior to the exam (according to the FIR filed with the police), why was no action taken? The board has released the re-examination date for class 12th Economics paper and said that it will be conducted on April 25.

5. While class 12th re-examination dates have been announced, the board is enlighten us about the fate of Class 10 students, who appeared for the Mathematics paper held on March 28. Students have no clue as to what they are supposed to do in the meantime. The police is still trying to identify the extent of the leak as the papers were leaked on WhatsApp and it has a reach that goes a long way.

Meanwhile, the Delhi High Court today issued a notice to CBSE, Delhi Police and HRD ministry on a PIL seeking 10th Maths paper be preferably held earlier and also seeking court-monitored probe into CBSE paper leak. The next hearing is likely to take place on 16th March

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