Judge chides the board for not rectifying mistakes for two years in row

The Madras High Court Bench here on Monday summoned Vibhu Nayar, the chairman of the Teachers Recruitment Board (TRB), to appear in the court on Wednesday on a petition filed by a candidate alleging that the question paper distributed to candidates who appeared for the Tamil competitive examination on July 21 this year for the post of postgraduate assistants had numerous errors.

The candidate, S. Vijayalakshmi, claimed in her petition that at least 47 out of the 150 questions in booklet series B of the question paper had errors. In her petition, she had sought grace marks to all the questions with errors.

Last week Justice S. Nagamuthu had ordered an interim stay on the publication of the examination results.

On Monday, the Secretary of the TRB submitted a counter affidavit contending that the TRB and the Directorate of Government Examinations were not liable for the errors in the question paper. In response to representations from candidates, a panel, comprising professors and assistant professors from Government Arts and Science Colleges, was formed. After scrutiny, the panel reported that the errors were only spelling mistakes and did not affect the meaning and content of the questions, the secretary said.

The experts were of the opinion that postgraduate Tamil students could easily understand and answer the questions without any problem, she further submitted.

“Not responsible”

G. Arivoli, the member secretary of the TRB, also appeared before Justice Nagamuthu and submitted that the TRB was not responsible for the mistakes.

Additional advocate general K. Chellapandian contended that the question papers had only clerical errors.

Justice Nagamuthu recalled a judgment he delivered last year expressing displeasure over the TRB for having more than 70 errors in last year’s question paper and criticised the board for not rectifying the mistakes this year. “Whoever is responsible for the mistake does not make any difference to the thousands of candidates who wrote the exams. Nearly one third of the question paper is wrong. The TRB has been irresponsible in not ensuring error free question papers this year also,” the judge observed.

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