SwatiShindeGole, March 17,2017

Source: The Times of India

Pune : Leak Of 5 HSC Papers On Mobile Apps Prompts Move

The spurt in the number of cases related to board exam paper leak through cellphone applications has prompted the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education to consider installing mobile phone jammers at examination centres.Following arrest of a principal, owners of coaching centres and a teacher in Mumbai for their alleged involvement in the paper leak, the state board learnt that papers were circulated on mobile apps from the examination centres. Besides, the state board has also proposed installation of CCTV cameras at all examination centres.

State board chairman Gangadhar Mhamane told TOI on Thursday , “We have asked all the divisional boards to submit a report on the problems faced by them in preventing examination malpractices. With the advancement in technology , the pattern of exam malpractice is also changing and we need to be in tune with the same. Hence, after studying the reports we will brainstorm and decide on the measures that need to be adopted.“

Officials at the examination centres had used mobile sharing application for circu lating five papers of higher secondary certificate exams.With a view to preventing such malpractices, the state board has started thinking of introducing measures to prevent individuals from using cell phones inside examination centres.

Mhamane said, “Mobile jammer seems to be the easiest available tool, which is widely used for security . However, the feasibility of using it, cost factor and requirement needs to be studied before we can arrive at a decision. We will brainstorm about the measures to restrict paper leak after the conclusion of the ongoing examination. Proposals would be sent to the state government. We had earlier sent a proposal for installation of CCTV cameras at examination centres, which is awaiting the state government’s approval.“ As many as five papers of Class XII ­ Marathi, secretarial practice, physics, political science and accounts ­ were found to be circulating on WhatsApp groups just minutes before the start of the exams this year.

However, the state education board remained unperturbed and even claimed that the leak would not give students much advantage.

Police have recovered 40 mobile phones belonging to school officials, students and coaching class owners, allegedly involved in the leaks.

Mobile phone jammer is used to prohibit transmission of cell phone signals in a particular area.

Once installed, the instrument disables mobile phone signals within the defined regulated zones and is mostly used in places like jails or cinema halls.