Aside from answers to the UP board examination questions, evaluators have also been left messages from students appealing for the minimum pass mark. Some took the appeal further by attaching money to their answer scripts to sweeten the deal.
One standard 12 examinee wrote of how a marriage proposal would be called off if they did not pass while another said his father would take him back to his village if he failed.
“A Rs 100 note was attached with an answer sheet. And there was a small message that read: Please have tea and snacks with this money. But do award me passing marks else my academic career will be doomed,” an examiner at a Government Inter College in the state capital said.
But it wasn’t just bribes and appeals; some students even jotted down threats and abuses on to their papers.
“One such warning was: I will make your life difficult if I get to know who has evaluated my answer sheet. I can find out as one of my family members is in the education department,” said another examiner.
Teachers have been going through answer sheets of thousands of students at five centres since March 30. However, examiners say such notes do not make any difference to them.
“We are teachers and such things do not impact our style of work. Marks are awarded only on merit of the answers. We discourage these kind of tactics as they are useless,” an evaluator at Aminabad Inter College said.
Examiners spend an approximate of two minutes to evaluate high school and intermediate papers, though the ideal time is seven to eight minutes. Due to high volume, they are often forced to correct papers as fast as they can, adversely affecting the quality.
RP Mishra, an office bearer of UP Madhyamik Shikhak Sangh, said, “The evaluation work begins at 10 am and ends at 5 pm with an hour-long lunch break in the afternoon. As per rule, a teacher is required to evaluate 50 answer sheets of high school or 40 copies of intermediate examination. This means eight high school copies or seven intermediate copies in an hour.”
According to Mishra, the UP Board should provide better infrastructure at the evaluation entre.
“Teachers are not machines. The fact that they are made to sit in small benches meant for students for evaluating answer sheets is not good,” he said.
The evaluation process ends on April 13.