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HSC I and II exams start: cheating fears

Karachi, May 29(The News): The Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) Annual Examination 2007 for candidates of class XI and XII Science, Commerce and Home Economics group will commence in the metropolis on May 29. The number of exam centres have been curtailed to make the system less prone to cheating, officials have said.

Special vigilance squads have been set up and law enforcement personnel have been requested for deployment at most centres so that cheating and other malpractices are checked, officials have added.

Earlier, the exams were to be held on May 22, but were postponed due to the incidents of May 12 following which the city situation was unpredictable. The Board of Intermediate Examination Karachi has set up 90 centres for conducting the exams. The exams will be held in both the morning and afternoon shift. Out of the total, 50 centres have been established for male candidates and 40 for female candidates.

In comparison, last year 105 examination centers were set up. The reason for the lesser number of exam centres is that some such centers were removed as they had been blacklisted. These include BYJ School, Qureshi School, Government Degree College, Liaquatabad and Government Boys School, Liaquatabad.

The exams for Pre-Engineering, Pre-Medical will be held in the morning while Commerce group will be held in the afternoon session from 2.00 p.m. to 5.00 p.m. The exams conclude on June 23, while General Group (Humanities) would possibly start from June 28, told Assistant Controller of Examination Ishaque Mamji.

In all, 75,448 candidates have registered themselves for the annual examination in Pre-medical, Pre-engineering and Home Economics group while 62,725 candidates are registered in the Commerce group.

About 15,710 male candidates are registered in the Part I Pre-engineering group along with 5,685 female candidates. In the Pre-medical group, 3,376 male students and 11,879 female students have registered themselves for Part I exams and as many as 449 girl students are registered in the Home Economics group

In Part II, Pre-medical group, 3,725 male candidates will appear in the exams, while 11,976 girls candidates have registered for the medical group and 489 for Home Economics. In the Commerce group, 15,307 regular male students will appear in Part I with 6,185 private candidates, while 9,124 girl students are registered as regular candidates for this group and 1,933 girls candidates are appearing privately in the exams.

In Part II Commerce Group, 13,878 regular male candidates and 6,377 private male candidates will appear for the exams. While 8,417 girls candidates (regular) and 1,544 (private) female candidates are registered to appear. In all, 32,549 candidates will sit in Part I and about 30,176 sitting in Part II exams.

On Tuesday, the Islamic Education paper will be held for Pre-engineering and Pre-medical and Home Economics while Accounting I for the Commerce Group will be held in the afternoon.

About 45 Vigilance teams, comprising two persons each have been formulated. Each would monitor two examination centres and 18 "Super Vigilance Teams" have also been formed comprising retired and serving Principals colleges.

The Assistant Controller of Examinations said that a letter has been sent requesting deployment of Rangers and law-enforcement agencies in sensitive colleges. The letter has also asked for permanent deployment of Rangers at senstive centres such as Government Islamia College, Adamjee Science College, Nishter College and Gulzar-e-Hijri College.

About 17 to 18 centres have been declared sensitive, it was learnt through reliable sources. It was learnt that external pressures were exerted on these centers by student organizations and mafias who claimed that they controlled the examination centres.

In the past, irregularities that occurred in these examinations centers include leaking of paper and use of unfair means during exams. The Assistant COE, however, said that all arrangements were finalised and the admit cards with revived date sheets were dispatched to the educational institutions.

He said that to prevent leakage, the papers will be printed in the night. He also said that mobile phones are not allowed in the examination centres. Another controversy that bogs the BIE is that the Controller of Examinations, Professor Dr Syed Abdul Aziz, had handed in his resignation to the controlling authority, the Sindh Governor, but his resignation was not accepted till the filing of this report.
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