TBSE firm against TSIC order on showing answer sheets

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Agartala, July 18 (UNI) The Tripura Board of Secondary Education (TBSE) today decided not to comply with the direction of Tripura State Information Commission (TSIC) pertaining to providing evaluated answer sheets to the students, seeking them under the Right to Information (RTI) Act 2005.

TBSE president Subrata Sengupta told newspersons here that that the board would file writ against the TSIC decision to the high court. ''If required, the board will rather move the Supreme Court than supplying evaluated answer scripts to the students,'' Mr Sengupta said.

TSIC had earlier slapped a penalty of Rs 10,000 to the secretary and the board's Public Information Officer (PIO) Pratyus Deb on July 15, for his refusal to supply answer scripts to one Somasree Choudhury of Agartala. It also directed him to provide the same within the next two months.

Ms Choudhury, ater securing third position in the higher secondary examination in 2007, applied to the TBSE under the RTI Act for the copies of the answer scripts and tabulation sheets of Bengali, Mathematics and Biology.

On being refused, she moved the TSIC for justice and the commission afterwards directed the TBSE authority to furnish her with the information sought. It upheld that the evaluated answer scripts and tabulation sheets were linked with personal information of an individual and the student had the absolute right to inspect it. But, TBSE did not comply with the order.

Finally, the commission, advocating fairness and transparency in an examination process, imposed penalty on the PIO and criticised the intention of the authority for negating the strict observance of the principle of natural justice.

Mr Sengupta referred that Orissa High Court, Supreme Court and Central Information Commission (CIC) had put their views against providing evaluated answer sheets to the student in different cases earlier. ''If supplying such information becomes a practice, security of the examiners will be under threat,'' he felt.

However, the TBSE president said if someone came with an order from the high court, only then would the TBSE supply the information, but under the direction of TSIC.

''The board had decided not to pay the penalty too,'' he informed.

Meanwhile, the guardians' forum of TBSE students demanded a CBI probe into the gross malpractice in the Higher Secondary and Madhyamik results this year, voicing for immediate dissolution of the board.

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