Monday, May 02, 2011

Engg entrance exam papers leaked; fresh ones used

Around 1.2 million students through the country who were to take the national engineering entrance examinations this morning had to wait for two hours and a fresh set of question papers, after it was discovered that the scheduled set of questions had been ‘leaked’ in Uttar Pradesh.

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which conducts the All India Engineering/Architecture Entrance Examination (AIEEE), promptly postponed the two sets of tests, scheduled to start at 9:30 am and 2:30 pm today, a senior official of the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) said. That was after the state police discovered the papers had been reportedly sold for Rs. 600,000 each and informed CBSE.

A team of the Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force (STF) nabbed a person in Kanpur (Uttar Pradesh) in connection with the leak and took him to Lucknow for questioning. Kanpur City Police chief K. Saurabh said the person was picked up near Devki Cinema Hall in Kakadev area, where most of the engineering coaching centres are located. His identity was not disclosed.

In Delhi, CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi said, "An inquiry will be conducted into the incident and those involved will be punished. When we got to know (about the leak) in the morning, our aim was to do it (hold the test) without causing much inconvenience to most of the children... First was to ensure the exam happens as early as possible and that we have been able to do," he said. The exams for the first paper began at noon and the second paper was conducted at 4:00 pm and a fresh set of questions were distributed to students.

AIEEE is held in two parts --- Bachelor of Engineering and Bachelor of Architecture. About 12,00,000 students sat for the test at over 1,600 centres in 80 cities today.

Uttar Pradesh Special Task Force's Senior Superintendent of Police Vijay Prakash said they received a copy of the question paper last night. "We faxed the paper to the CBSE Chairman and it was confirmed this morning that the paper was original," he said.

This is the first time that AIEEE was also held in the online format for students willing to appear in this mode, which was also postponed accordingly. About 100,000 candidates from 20 cities in India registered for the examination online. AIEEE is conducted to gain admissions into National Institutes of Technology (NITs) and other engineering colleges in the country.

Special Director General of Police Brij Lal said in Lucknow that a police informer claimed the leaked AIEEE papers were available for Rs. 600,000 each.

The CBSE chairman said those students also appearing for the Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC) examination, being held today, will be allowed to appear for the AIEEE on May 8.

Source: Business Standard, May 2, 2011

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