Invigilator turned cheating agent

Foul play

Invigilator turned cheating agent

But in a shocking incident, an invigilator, abdicating his responsibility, goaded an SSLC student to pass around her answer script among others writing the examination at Gem English High School in R T Nagar last month. Frightened by the propsects of being debarred from writing her examination, the student, Sangeetha (name changed to protect her identity) complied with the invigilator’s demand.

According to enquiries by Deccan Herald, the invigilator walked up to Sangeetha’s desk after students in the examination hall at Gem English High School had completed answering almost a third of the questions on April 5. The invigilator had been hired from some other institution.

Initially, Sangeetha, who secured 90 marks in Maths in the preparatory test ahead of the SSLC exam, “refused” to hand over the answer script to him since she had several more questions to tackle. “But then he threatened to throw me out of the hall if I did not comply. He snatched the answer script as I stared at him dumbstruck and shocked,” Sangeetha recalled.

“As I watched him coolly pass around my answer script to the other students in the hall, tears well up. I could not believe that an invigilator, who is supposed to prevent cheating, was actively aiding students to copy my answers,” Sangeetha, indignant at the invigilator’s audacity, said.

Angry but helpless, Sangeetha watched the farce for nearly an hour, weeping all the while. “Around noon, when just about 15 minutes were left for the final bell to be sounded, the answer script was returned to me,” she said. Before it was returned the invigilator gave her an empty answer sheet of an “absentee” and was asked to write out answers in pencil. “This too was circulated among the other examinees,” Sangeetha narrated.

Although out-spoken, Sangeetha was advised her parents to remain light-lipped about the incident. More than a month after the “insulting” episode, Sangeetha is scared and apprehensive about lodging a formal complaint for it could go against her. “I expected at least 85 in Math. Since I could not complete questions that carried 15 more marks, I could land only 70,” she said, a look of anguish and despondency writ large on her face.

Her father, Santosh, who is a production operator for a private company, does not want to invite the wrath of the “system” and has refrained from complaining.

School principal Rubina Kausar said she was not aware of the incident. “Otherwise, I would have definitely pulled him for such reprehensible act. If Sangeetha submits a written complaint, the school will definitely take all action to expose the invigilator so he is punished,” Kausar told Deccan Herald.

When apprised of the Sangeetha’s case, Karnataka Secondary Education Examination Board director M N Baig promised action against the invigilator “if a written complaint is submitted”.

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