[ Nellie N Manpoong ]
ITANAGAR, Jul 28: Candidates appearing for the preliminaries of the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Combined Competitive Examination (APPSCCE) on Sunday are pinning hope on the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC) to conduct an error-free examination this time around.
The APPSC had received severe criticism from the candidates soon after the examination held in 26 November last year, for allegedly picking out questions from various websites and preparing an easy geography paper ‘on purpose.’
When asked whether the APPSC is prepared to live up to the expectations of the candidates, APPSC Secretary Taru Talo said the commission has made every effort to maintain transparency.
“We can’t speculate at this point, but we hope to have an error-free examination this time,” he said.
It is understood that there is no committee to look into the preparation of the question papers, as the job is being outsourced.
“We have blacklisted and sent a legal notice to the previous agency responsible for preparing the papers, and have outsourced it to a different agency this time. The commission has also issued certain guidelines to it, so that the same mistakes are not repeated,” Talo said.
Without divulging much on the preparation of the question papers, the secretary informed that the syllabus and pattern would remain the same this year, and that students need not have any apprehension regarding any change in pattern.
As informed earlier, internet services will also be suspended on Sunday at various district headquarters during the exam hours to ensure free and fair examination.
On the matter of the four Chakma students who had qualified for appearing in the preliminary examinations, the secretary said only those who were issued admit cards previously would be allowed to appear in the examination, and that the four Chakma students were not issued any such cards.
While many students were unavailable to offer opinions, some said that they expect all the papers to be tougher this time.
“I expect the geography paper to be more difficult this time as so many had complained against it. However, I have prepared to my best capabilities and hope to do well, regardless of how the questions are,” said a geography candidate.
However, many have lost their enthusiasm and are either skipping the examination or appearing because of pressure from their homes.
A political science candidate said she was not keen on appearing for the examination again as, following last year’s fiasco, she had lost the enthusiasm she had started with, while a history candidate said he was ill-prepared but would appear for the examination for the sake of it.
Over 22,000 candidates are expected to sit for the preliminary APPSCCE in 14 centres (district headquarters) and several other sub-centres across the state.
Talo said the results would be notified as early as possible – probably within the week following the examination.
Earlier, in November 2017, a few candidates had claimed that over half of the questions in the public administration paper had questions from www.cssforum.com.pk, which is a resource website for the CSS competitive examination and contains information about the Pakistan civil services, and from an article published on the website www.sociologydiscussion.com by an unfamiliar writer, one Shelly Shah.
On 19 December 2017, the candidates staged a protest outside the APPSC office here, demanding fresh examinations and introducing the scaling process – in line with the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) – in all the subjects to upkeep the ‘legitimacy of the examination.’
[ Nellie N Manpoong ]