I took my Mathematics exam of the AHSEC 12th Boards on February the 20th, 2016 and frankly speaking, I do not consider myself faring that well in it. Hence, it was imperative for me to do well in Physics if I had to keep my tall ambitions of migrating myself to a higher education institute of unquestionable repute afloat. Accordingly, I swotted as hard as I had never before in all my life and expended some three pens and one fat virgin notebook so that I didn’t disappoint myself again. 24th of February came, and as prepared as Joginder Sharma was perhaps before bowling the World-Cup winning ball of ’07, I entered through the gates of the Examination Centre and towards the hall but fate, or some bunch of morons (to be precise), had other plans. For lo and behold, there was a huddle in front of the hall consisting of my peers visibly agitated and disappointed; I thought what could’ve been the matter and with
moths butterflies in my stomach, proceeded towards them. The matter as I was soon informed lethargically by one of my classmates was that of the news of the Physics Question Paper being leaked but more importantly of the exam being deferred; and now you should picture the euphoria in which the nation revelled when Jodinger Sharma won us the World Cup in ’07, multiply the emotion a thousand-fold and then inverse all of the euphoria into despondence and I think you would be clearly seeing the emotional state of every student who was to take the famed examination that day.
That done, flash-forward to a week or so later and a small sentence were taking Assam by the storm: “Fire sets HSLC Answer Sheets and Students Future Ablaze.” An ‘accidental’ fire burnt up more than 50,000 HSLC Answer Sheets of Class X Students of the state at a ‘safe-keep’ in Jorhat constituting the need for re-examinations at some specified centres. The news, boring as it may have sounded, had its share of glamour in the melancholic outcry of the students who were to re-sit the exams and the Student Community in general, and also a twist of tale when it was later confirmed that the fire was no accident but an act of miscreants: Sherlock Holmes stuff, you know. That also done, flash-forward to the 7th of March, when Conscience was obviously fooling around somewhere along with Responsibility, Biology Question Paper of AHSEC 12th Boards, the examinations of which were to be held the day after, was also leaked thereby prolonging the already-prolonged examinations and quite successfully pissing off the already pissed-off Student Community to heights unimaginable. The three fateful events been briefed, flash-forward to today as I, a student, vex about the tale that was rightfully ours and yet somehow, not ours at the same time.
Logic dictates that for every effect, there has to be a cause and hence for such moronic acts as briefed above, there also must have been some substantial cause. Man being ever the curious and more-so in affairs such as these, is hell-bent on finding the cause and thus naturally, a lot of fingers have been pointed in a lot of directions and the blame-game has commenced with the accused ranging from some unknown students to the Chief Minister of the state himself: people, in general. The real-life counterparts of Abhijit-Daya of CID are working hard to find the real truth, I presume, but since their findings are not made public yet, we have to suffice ourselves with the rumours which suggest that the Physics Paper was leaked by some Principal of some school for his son or on such lines, the answer sheet burn-up was a horrid act for personal or monetary gain, and that the Biology paper was leaked at Sonari or by some students of SBA, Dibrugarh for reasons unknown: whether these rumours are true or false only time will tell but considering that the State Legislative Assembly Elections are barely a month away, one could also get the notion that all of these are somehow connected to the ensuing polls.
The AHSEC and SEBA, the two education boards in charge of these two examinations, fall under the Ministry of Education, Govt. of Assam headed by veteran Congress leader Sarat Barkotoky and, though not being actively responsible for these events, is liable to take responsibility for such lapses of duty of the two boards as their head and public representative and at such, his chances of being re-elected an MLA are pushed to the worse end of affairs. Such a proposition is, of course, highly beneficial for those planning to end his 25-year old reign at Sonari and thereby adding one more seat to their kitty and whether true or false, surely makes a curious mind wonder if that was the inherent motive behind such misdoings. Nonetheless, one could not ignore the fact that the administration and functioning of the two boards has been sloppy and along with the real culprits, they are also to be blamed. Likewise, from one thing or another, the blame-game will continue with no unanimously agreeable conclusion until and unless the CID closes the case and the particular details are thereby disclosed, but no matter whosoever are accountable, the brunt has to be borne only by the students; not the culprits, not the officials, not the politicians but purely by the students.
Apart from the humongous task of going through the unusually hard books one more time and definitely not in the best of spirits, the delay in the exams poses several technical little menaces for the concerned students, For starters, the delay pushes back the academic calendar of the state which would mean hastened evaluation so that the results are posted in calibration to the national timeframe which is even more pivotal as in the case of the 12th students who will be needing their certificates up and well in time if they seek to seed themselves at some national institution. Moreover, the results as declared by the AHSEC and SEBA for the past few years have always had their shares of glitches and goof-ups even when all was well and fine and now that the storm of election-duty coupled with the short time frame for evaluation is looming over the heads of the evaluators, the picture of the results doesn’t quite seem to be a happy one. That, however, could be delt with because the Assamese are used to sloppy governmentat work in recent times anyways but more importantly, the delay has been the most successful in its award-winning task of shaking the psychological framework of the examinees to the brink of breaking for the 10th students who have to sit in the examination that they had earlier appeared and thought it to be done and dusted, and to a lesser extent, for the 12th students who’ll have lost their spirits to study anymore but they have to for their own sakes as the postponed exams approach in a perpetual haze of uncertainty. All in all, dafuq!
Concerning the general notion in which, these horrid acts had been performed and also what their ramifications are one could relate it to the sacred sacrifices made in some ritual ceremonies in some religion, where a sheep, duck, or other being that the ones who are sacrificing deem inferior is
slaughtered sacrificed for a greater cause and a greater good; the students being the inferiors sacrificed herein and the greater cause being vaguely known to all. Having said that, even when making such sacrifices in religious norms, there are some prohibitions as to what could be slaughtered sacrificed and what should not be, but it seems that in this metaphorical ceremony of men performed over the last few weeks, there is no such prohibition.
As one has no control over what’s happened and apparently no control over what will also happen, one could only hope that those guilty will be found and even if they manage to escape the laws of men (thanks to the length of the constitution), they are but punished by the laws of gods. With this hope, I try to get rid of my frustrations and also hope that all of you wish me luck so that I don’t fail in doing so and then some more luck so that I somehow manage to swim through all of Newton and all of Maxwell all over again for the Physics exam that (may) take(s) place on the 17th of March. Poof!
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Will be off for a week or so. See ya… Take Care. Poof! 😉
Arunabh Debendranath Konwar