The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) will be all geared up to ensure that no incident of mass cheating occurs during the All India Pre-Medical Entrance Test (AIPMT), to be conducted on May 1 next year.
The HRD ministry, in a meeting with the CBSE, has finalised a fool-proof plan – which will include arming over 1,000 examination centres across the country with handheld metal detectors, mobile phone jammers and fingerprint scanners – to prevent a repeat of the entrance test’s notorious 2015 episode.
The last medical entrance test, taken by over six lakh candidates, was cancelled and re-conducted on the Supreme Court’s order when reports emerged of students at certain centres of Haryana indulging in mass-cheating by stitching Bluetooth devices and sophisticated microphones into their clothes.
While the metal detectors and jammers (to be used with the government’s permission) will check the use of audio-visual devices, the use of fingerprint scanners will prevent the entry of fraudulent candidates into medical colleges.
“The applicants, at the time of making the application, will need to send scanned fingerprint impressions along with their photographs. At the centre, their fingerprint impressions will be collected again through inkless pads,” an official told HT. This will ensure that the candidate who filled the application and the one who took the examination are the same, he added.
Considering that some students had earlier scanned their question papers and passed them to accomplices outside through sophisticated audio-visual devices, the CBSE has now decided to bar candidates from carrying phones, watches and even pens into the examination centre. “Although handheld metal detectors can discover such devices at the centre’s entrance, invigilators will also be given flashlights to ensure candidates do not stuff tiny microphones into their vests or ears. We will be providing candidates with pens at the centre,” the CBSE official said.
Voicing his approval for the CBSE’s plan, former NCERT director and educationist JS Rajput said, “The CBSE has enough resources to make foolproof arrangements. Moreover, it collects over Rs 1,000 from each candidate… Also, procuring metal detectors and fingerprint scanners for one day is a very much feasible solution. It should not be a problem.”
However, not everybody seemed excited about the security arrangements being made. “Such elaborate arrangements could turn out to be a hassle for students, who will suffer for what some cheats did in the previous exam. I hope CBSE ensures that there is no chaos at the centres,” Vaibhav Singh, a student, said.