Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday constituted a nine-member expert committee to advise J&K Board of Professional Entrance Examinations (BOPEE) how to conduct the Common Entrance Test (CET).
The panel to be headed by the BOPEE chairman has been constituted in compliance to the directions by J&K High Court.
On March 3, a division bench of Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar and Tashi Rabstan had asked the Chief Secretary to constitute committee of experts in the field who would advise the BOPEE as to how and in which manner the (CET) shall be conducted.
It had also asked the committee to advise the BOPEE whether it would be permissible to have two correct answer keys for one single question and marks given to all the candidates.
Besides the chairman, the panel comprises Controller of Examinations (BOPEE), Dead Academic Affairs University of Kashmir/Jammu, Controller Examination of the varsities, Principal Government Medical College Srinagar/Jammu, Principal GECT Jammu, Member Supervisory and Monitoring Constitutional Statutory Permanent Committee or nominee of chairman of the Committee, Secretary BOPEE (member secretary) and any other expert(s) as may be co-opted by the chairman from time to time.
Besides what has been directed by the court, the government said that the Committee shall meet as and when required and at least one month before the commencement of the examination conducted by the BOPEE and in such manner as may be notified by it.
The panel, government said, shall make recommendations on any other issue related to the conduct of examination and preparation of keys placed before the Committee. While allowing an appeal against its single bench order in case titled J&K Board of Professional Entrance Examination & Ors Versus Qazi Basra and Others, the division bench had observed that BOPEE shall have to advert its attention to the concerns in order to work out appropriate methodology in feature.
“BOPEE is entrusted with the most sacred duty to select meritorious candidates to undergo training at professional colleges in the state. In order to accomplish this solemn purpose, the fundamental duty of BOPEE to ensure that persons of highest integrity and unmatched competence are assigned task of setting up of papers,” the bench had said.
“The competing students not only burn midnight oil but also keep on toiling day and night to secure berth in profession colleges. Availability of ocean of information at their finger tips and hard work of these students has catapulted them in to a position where from they can raise finger at any wrong answer key set up by the paper setter. The wrong answer key is definitely bound to affect the merit of the competing candidate.”
Utmost care and caution, court had said, has to be taken by BOPEE in selecting the paper setter and “consequently by paper setter in formulating the question paper and answers keys.”
The direction and observations were made by the bench while allowing an appeal by CET conducting body against November 29, 2013 order by a court’s single bench directing re-evaluation of Biology and Chemistry papers of last year’s CET by experts of Kashmir University.
The single bench of the court had also asked the experts to see whether some of the questions in the papers were “defective or erroneous.”
However, the BOPEE had challenged the order, claiming that by the directions Board has virtually been directed it to outsource its duties.