Question paper leak has almost become like a ritual during every recruitment process in Assam. Most of the time, it was the board exams which were on the receiving end and Assam police are engaged to find the culprits behind such leak of question papers. But this time it’s different. Though every question paper leak is a serious offense, when it happens in an examination to recruit police officers, it forces all to revisit the way these examinations are being conducted.
On September 20, the question paper of the written examinations for 597posts of sub-inspector in the Assam Police got leaked. Throwing the hopes and expectations of around 66,000 candidates who appeared in the examination into the air, Assam State Level Police Recruitment Board called off the exam.
Embarrassed with the situation, chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal who is also the home minister immediately ordered a probe into the matter and asked CID to leave no stone unturned to find out the culprits. Interestingly, the investigation found the involvement of top police officials, BJP leaders and other top profile officials making the situation worse for the state government and the ruling party. Sonowal said no one will be spared.
But the important question is how the question paper which was in the custody of the police department could be leaked. The papers were taken from Guwahati to the district police headquarters with proper security and were kept under police custody till the examination started on Sunday.
This is not the first time such incidents happened and it’s also very difficult to make a full proof arrangement but every time such incidents happened, it leaves a question mark on the educational institutions and recruitment boards. These boards and agencies which were given the responsibility to conduct such exams must try to fix the shortcomings. In a first, manual handling of question papers should be avoided. With proper use of modern technology and taking lessons from other boards, Assam must explore techniques to stop such a nuisance. At the time when lockdown has left many jobless and the state government has been making policies to reengage them in works, conducting a fair recruitment process is a must.