Veena Pandita to hold charge till appointment of new chairman
SRINAGAR: The axe has finally fallen on the topmost functionary of the state’s largest examination conducting body—Jammu and Kashmir Board of School Education (JKBOSE) as the government announced to sack Prof Zahoor Ahmad Chatt as Chairman following a series of controversies over ‘flawed’ examination and evaluation system.
Secretary School Education, Farooq Ahmad Shah on Wednesday directed the BOSE Secretary Veena Pandita to hold additional charge as Chairperson till the government appoints a new head for the semi-autonomous examination body.
Chatt was appointed on the coveted post in July 2015 after serving as Nodal Principal at Amar Singh College.
Sources told Kashmir Reader that he was removed on the directions of the Minister for Education, Altaf Bukhari, who has been upset with him since the recent controversies.
Last month the BOSE Chairman was in the middle of controversies after many students complained about flawed evaluation system at the Board.
Many students were declared fail in some subjects and they were asked to reappear in exam. However, after re-evaluation it was found that the students had actually qualified their exams with good marks.
Following the revelations, some students filed a complaint with the Minister, who had sought explanation from the BOSE Chairman over alleged negligence in evaluation system.
“The complaint has exposed the loopholes in BOSE and misconduct in the Board’s evaluation system,” said an officer.
He said the minister had taken a strong cognisance of the matter and termed it criminal negligence as it put hundreds of students in trouble.
The Board charges Rs 350 per students of class 10 and 12 for re-evaluation of one subject and Rs 180 is charged for a photocopy of the answer. This is a good revenue generating path for many people in the Board, said an official.
However, insiders say that there was more to the exit story than meets the eye. “The grave discrepancies in examinations and misconduct of evaluators and examiners are not a new phenomenon with BOSE. During the Chatt’s time, the system has in fact been streamlined,” said another official of the BOSE.
The order issued by the secretariat said that a 5-member committee has been framed to search for the new chairman of the BOSE.
Sources said that Chairman of the committee for fixation of fees ion private schools has also completed his term but the government is indecisive on whether to extend the term of incumbent chairman Justice (retd) Hakim Imtiyaz Hussain or appoint any other person in his place. During his tenure, Justice Hussain has played pivotal role in streamlining fee structure in most of the schools across the state. However, some influential schools with exorbitant fee structure have been put on notice by the committee. This has caused consternation among the owners of these schools.
Sources said that decision on the committee head is likely to be taken shortly.