Source: Original Story By TheHimalayanTimes
Security personnel deployed after students resorted to vandalism (above); tyres set on fire in the middle of a road, in Birgunj, on Friday, March 29, 2019. Photo: Ram Sarraf/THT
Kathmandu, March 29
The government today postponed all Secondary Education Examinations scheduled from tomorrow till April 4 in Province 2.
Minister of Education, Science and Technology Giri Raj Mani Pokharel made this announcement at a press conference organised late in the evening today after the question paper for social studies was leaked in Province 2 before the scheduled examination earlier in the day.
The minister also made it clear that SEE would take place in other provinces as per schedule.
The Province 2 government had cancelled SEE exam yesterday also after the question paper of science was leaked before the scheduled exam.
Pokharel said science examination, rescheduled for April 5, would take place on that day. He added that the government would reschedule postponed examinations before mid-April. The government’s decision will affect 70,568 students of Province 2 in 262 examination centres.
The minister said leaking of question papers was a serious matter and the government would probe the incident.
“Three layers of security is provided at Janak Education Material Centre, where question papers are printed. The printed papers are safely dispatched to police officers who send them to relevant police posts only three days before the examination.
Only an hour before the exam, chief of the examination centre receives the packet of question papers. If even after these precautionary measures question papers are leaked, then it is a serious matter,” the minister said.
Following today’s leak, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology directed all district examination coordination committees to ensure security of the remaining SEE question papers.
National Examination Board and Central Investigation Bureau have formed probe committees to investigate the leak.
Pokharel held an emergency meeting at the ministry and directed the offices concerned to take action against those responsible for the leak.
The line minister also directed officials to inspect examination centres, verify question papers and send their inspection reports to the ministry by this evening.
Khagraj Baral, secretary at the MoEST, said his office asked the home ministry to provide necessary help in the investigation and the home ministry responded positively by directing the CIB to form a probe committee.
In the previous years, SEE question papers used to be the same across the country but from this year all provinces have different question papers.
SEE Exam Controller Bishnu Adhikari hinted that the question papers could have been leaked by Janak Education Material Centre or district police offices that dealt with question papers. He said his office had readied Province 2 question papers on March 11.
Education expert Bidhyanath Koirala said lack of trust in provincial government led to such incidents.
He said that the federal government should allow provincial governments to prepare question papers and maintain secrecy and security of questions papers. Adhikari said those responsible for leaking question papers would be punished with a fine of Rs 100,000 and jail term not exceeding six months.
A version of this article appears in print on March 30, 2021 of The Himalayan Times.
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