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Should Universities and Boards disclose evaluated answer scripts
379 members have voted
BANGALORE: In a landmark decision, the Karnataka Information Commission (KIC) has ruled that evaluated answer scripts should be made available to anybody who wishes to see them and cannot be kept confidential for the benefit of the examiners.
The commission has ordered the Karnataka Public Service Commission (KPSC) to make available the answerscripts free of cost to applicant E Ramamurthy, who sought copies of four answer scripts of the Gazetted Probationers Examinations, 1998.
State chief information commissioner K K Misra and state information officer K A Thippeswamy have rejected the KPSC's plea, which said that answer scripts cannot be made public as they are exempted under Sec 8 (i) (e) and 8 (i) (j) of the RTI Act, 2005.
More importantly, it has rejected the Central Information Commission's decision under Section 8 (i) (j) saying that seeking evaluated answer papers either his/her own or others is purely personal and has no relationship to any public interest or activity. "This view does not appear correct to this commission.
Although the applicant is not to be asked the purpose for seeking information, in the present case, providing the information would ensure the impartiality, objectivity, and fairness of the evaluation by examiners appointed by public services commissions whose purpose incidentally is of utmost concern to the people," it stated.
the KIC has held.
Getting to see their corrected answer sheets on demand looks possible for Calcutta University (CU) students, thanks to Right to Information (RTI).
The state information commission on Tuesday directed the university to show a former student his evaluated answer script. The student was unhappy with his marks in the B.Com Part II Accountancy (Honours) examination of 2006.
The commission, however, added that the university should protect the identity of the examiner and scrutinizer who marked the answer script.
The university syndicate on Wednesday decided unanimously to accept the commissionâ€™s directive. Suranjan Das, pro vice-chancellor (academic affairs), said that the university was ready to show the student his script.
Utsav Dutta, the petitioner, now an MBA student in New Delhi, said: â€œWhen the results came out in July 2006, I found I had fared badly in some papers.â€ He contacted the university, which okayed a scrutiny, but turned down his request to show him the answer script. â€œI moved high court, which directed the university to show me the script. But the university cited internal problems.â€
In September, Dutta filed a petition using the RTI clause. â€œBut I still failed to get it and then moved the commission.â€
The commissioner summoned the CU registrar, who acts as the universityâ€™s principal information officer (PIO), and directed him to provide Dutta with the data.
Initially, the university officials said such disclosures were exempted under the RTI. The commission held another hearing in early December.
â€œAfter that, we directed the PIO to disclose the information, as it does not come under the exempted category,â€ said Arun Bhattacharyya, information commissioner.
Dutta, who lost a semester in MBA because he was not issued a marksheet, is yet to receive any communication from the university.
The directive may have far-reaching implications. â€œSince this will set a precedent, more students may approach us. We are considering guidelines for showing scripts to undergraduates and steps are being taken to preserve the scripts,â€ said pro vice-chancellor Das.
About 20 lakh undergraduate answer scripts are examined every year.
â€œThe CU authorities and examiners will now be alert, as they can at last be made answerable,â€ said M. Bhattacharjee, an activist of the RTI Manch in the state.
The Telegraph - Calcutta : Metro