The Dahod mass cheating case has left the education sector wobbling as the Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board (GSHSEB) took action against 980 students in the examination for Class XII. This action comes forth as far as the board’s biggest taken against so many students.
The board on Tuesday set an example by penalizing students involved in mass cheating at two centres 38 km away in Dahod. One centre is located at Pipero while the other is at Dasa.
All 1,655 students from two examination centres in Gujarat became accused of massively copying Gujarati essays. Though after investigation, 675 students got permitted to pass.
The board’s verdict had sparked public uproar as there was ample evidence that all the students had copied the same Gujarati essay, ‘Vasant no Vaibhav’ or ‘Vasant no Mahima’. Most quoted a couplet from Manoj Khaderia’s poem.
The board took action against only 980 students and withheld their results. Exam centres got delisted, as the punished students had 90-100% plagiarism in their essay samples, GSHSEB sources said. At the same time, 675 students plagiarism reported few paragraphs.
The flying squad of GSHSEB took hold of the case investigation in late April. Between May 1 and May 14, five teams comprising 30 teachers meticulously scanned every word in the answer books of these 1,655 students. The results found the same Gujarati essay paragraphs in the candidates’ answers.
Called upon by a panel headed by the District Education Officer, every student had to appear per the procedure. Later, the commission sent the report to the Examination Reform Committee of Gandhinagar for further analysis.
The committee ruled that all 1,655 students committed fraud.
After the Examination Reform Committee verification, an education department source said the answer sheets went to the panel of teachers exclusively for this case. However, the panel of teachers suggested that the board should only punish the 980 students at fault for plagiarism.