Dismisses case filed by medicot accused of using Bluetooth in exams

“Whether movies such as Munna Bhai MBBS and its Tamil remake Vasool Raja MBBS are based on fact or fiction?” wondered the Madras High Court in a judgement rendered on Tuesday and said: “The issue in this case reflects the storyline of these films in which the heroes used a hi-tech device (Bluetooth earphone) for copying in the examinations for obtaining MBBS degrees.”

Justice K. Chandru made the observation while dismissing a writ petition filed by a MBBS student whose final-year examination results were withheld by the Examination Discipline Committee (EDC) of Dr. MGR Medical University, besides debarring him from writing the examinations for one session for having allegedly used a Bluetooth device to get the answers dictated during examinations.

In the judgement reserved in the Principal Seat of the High Court in Chennai but delivered in the Madurai Bench, the judge pointed out that the petitioner was a student of Stanley Medical College in Chennai.

He and seven others were suspected of having used hi-tech equipment to indulge in malpractices during the final year part-II examinations held in February this year.

The EDC had taken up the matter following a complaint lodged by two other students. The university also sought the assistance of Cyber Crime branch of Chennai police which in its interim report stated that call details of three phone numbers used by the students had been used to receive unusually long duration calls extending up to two hours at the time of examination.

Since no particular student could be fixed for the malpractice in the examination, the police suggested that the varsity could use conventional method to identify the culprits.

Thereafter, an expert committee scrutinised the answer scripts of the students and found that most of the accused had reproduced the answers verbatim from the medical books.

However, the petitioner’s counsel claimed before the court that his client could not be blamed for writing answers exactly as in the book because it was the evaluators who generally encourage students to memorise answers and reproduce the same. He also alleged mala fide intention on the part of the Vice-Chancellor of the university in punishing him.

Rejecting his contentions, Mr. Justice Chandru said that the writ petition was not maintainable on the short ground that the petitioner had challenged an order passed by the Controller of Examinations on June 14 debarring him and others from writing the examinations for the next three sessions though the order was subsequently modified and the punishment was restricted only to one session.

He also blamed the petitioner for having approached the court rather than appearing before the EDC on June 19 for proving his innocence despite a specific communication sent to him on June 16. “When an opportunity was given and it has not been made use of, there is no use in, later on, lamenting about the denial of opportunity,” the judge said.

He went on to state: “It is not as if the university is not alive to the situation. It has balanced interest of students as well as the purity of the examination in future. While toning up the Hall in which the examinations are conducted and also recommending the change of centres, the university is also trying its best to prevent such hi-tech devices being used to defraud the examiners.”