A rainy morning here in Delhi. First was a text message that ran thus, “hello brother call me asap when you get this. Prelims Commerce optional candidate qualified candidate this side”. So the next thing I did when I saw his text was call him back. He introduced himself and also told be that he got hold of my number after much searching. Then he told me about this new problem that has cropped up. That of around 73 commerce candidates filing a writ petition at the Itanagar High court, demanding some way of correcting the injustice, even if its a re-examination for commerce optional exclusively. The latter had chills run down my spine. A re-examination, again?
Forgot to mention, but I am also one of the three commerce candidates who made it through the prelims held in July, the reason behind the text message and the call. So my friend on the other side had the story rolling, and in good detail. He was surprised how I wasn’t in touch with these news, more so when it concerned us. But then how would I? It was only the other day that I came to know that this esteemed daily has soft prints run online on its website. And “The Hindu” daily that I read didn’t put this up even as a passing reference in the last few editions. Coincidentally we were the two commerce candidates who had shot off letters to the editor of this esteemed daily post the prelims. My one being published on the 31st July on the readers’ forum, titled “Commission shouldn’t be surprised”. While his was published on the 30th.
He told me that he had visited the commission before the result was declared and had received genuine assurances that the matter would be looked into. Post the result, a high ranking official from the commission also acknowledged that the result was declared keeping in mind the assurances given.
So I asked him what now? He told me we, the three of us who have qualified have now been left in quandary. Incidentally it was he who had helped draft the initial draft of the injustice that had been done. One of his close friends had now decided to take help of the draft and move it in court. And what about our third guy, had he contacted him? To which he answered in the negative. “He is a general candidate, a non- Arunachali. I don’t think he would want to get into this mess”.
A casual talk followed. We talked about our educational backgrounds and incidentally it seemed our qualification was justified, at least to us. He was NET qualified and had reached the interview stage of the last APCS exam. While I myself am also NET qualified, have eminent institutions like SRCC and delhi school of economics under my kitty, and have also written the UPSC mains last year. While few of his friends who have gone forward with the petition, he told me, have not been able to answer even the basic questions of the prelims commerce paper. Another justification that he put forth was what was need to get declarations signed from professors regarding the questions being out of syllabus. Any serious aspirant would know which were out and which were not. Please understand here that I am not stereotyping here that none of the others who didn’t make it are undeserving, or that they did not work hard, or that they do not come from good educational backgrounds. Just at the present moment, the three of us who made it, I believe we do deserve it.
Post the paper He had even invited all the commerce candidates for a meeting on what future course of action should be taken. This he told me, he had made known through an advertisement on this esteemed daily. And how many turned up? Zero. Only one of them called.
It’s a battle against time for all of us who made it through prelims. But it’s been a different battle for me and my friend, and probably the general candidate from Pasighat. When a problem lingers behind us, concentration is bound to be affected.
And the sole dilemma that has now confronted us three is, whose side are we on? Are we on the side of the commerce optional brethren, or the commerce optional- qualified brethren.
I hope the Commission and the High court bench at Itanagar bring this issue to a logical conclusion.
Re-examination? No, please, not again.