1. A welcome Judgment but a bit too late by the Honourable judiciary:
In the present situation the judiciary now could have ordered APPSC to stay the ongoing APPSCCE mains exam till the time the expert committee had given its report. Anyways, even the constitution of expert committee to look into anomalies in 22 optional papers is a welcome move.
2. The fault of APPSC and its foolishness to conduct mains exam:
First, since its job is to conduct recruitment exams and not set question papers (as they aren’t subject experts) the least it could have done is to outsource it to some credible paper setter and crosscheck it for any error considering prelims was being reconducted for the second time! But no, it had to err again, that too big time!! Who gives 49 out of 125(total) out of syllabus questions (almost 40%). Also, there are at least 7-8 anomalous questions in geography optional paper (prelims) – I have geography as my optional.
Second, I know conducting exams is the constitutional duty of APPSC. But the exam has to be error free in addition to being fair. Since it has committed error in setting optional papers it has infringed the most important Part of the Indian constitution i.e. Part 3 – Fundamental Rights of the students.
Third, it could have gracefully postponed the mains exams earlier since the case was going on (which it still is) in the court since it has accepted that 49 questions were out of syllabus in commerce optional making their case in court for conduction of Mains exam very weak. Had there been some competent and intelligent person heading APPSC, it would have gracefully accepted their mistake and postponed the mains exam and resolved the issue suo moto, thus preventing the present ugly situation. This would have saved the little remaining respect which was still there for APPSC.
Let me elaborate once again why the case of APPSC in court is weak:
• If anomalous questions are present in Optional papers (even a single question) then exams should be reconducted because it infringes our fundamental rights i.e. Article 14 and Article 16(1).
• b) Even if the candidates are compensated “grace marks” for some error in questions or answer keys then the marks given should be the full marks of that particular question – because of the principle of equality (to know why, I highly recommend readers to read the aforementioned judgment by P&H HC). Considering this the grace marks of students with commerce optional will be 49 X 2 = 98 marks!! With whooping 98 marks (that too free) how can only 3 students with commerce optional qualify for mains. Since those who gave the exam knows what the level of GS (preliminary) paper was.
• c) There were many errors in prelims exam of other optional papers too. I have highlighted the errors in geography optional below.
3. An appeal to the Honourable Governor:
Honourable Governor should intervene now and stop the mains exams till the expert committee give its finding to APPSC. Governor in its official authority under Article 309 of the Indian constitution it is the designated authority to make rules regarding the recruitment in the state.
Also, it is mentioned in the APPSC Combined Rules 2001 that:
“Power of Governor to amend: Notwithstanding anything contained in these rules, Governor can amend or effect any change in the rules at any time as and when considered necessary.
Power to remove difficulties: If any difficulties arise in application of this rules, Governor may issue appropriate orders as deemed necessary for removing such difficulties.
Interpretation: If any question arises as to the interpretation to these rules, it shall be decided by Governor, whose decision shall be final.”
If the Governor doesn’t intervene now then later APPSC will lose its sanctity and become a laughing stock.
4. Anomalies in Geography (Set – C) prelims paper:
Since Expert committee is now constituted, I would like to bring their attention to the 8 anomalous questions in Geography optional paper (prelims) SET- C:
• Q. 3 – Here the options are ambiguous since the book “Physical Geography” by Savindra Singh page no.64 says “6 major plates and 20 minor plates”, NCERT Physical geography class 11 book says “7 major and some minor plates”, Wikipedia says “7 major plates” but some books consider Indo-Australian Plate two different plates, technically making the total no. of major plates 8. Even though we consider major plates to be 7 there is no concrete defined number of Minor plates which changes from book to book
• Q. 47 – Here options A and C are correct. Since ozone is mostly found in stratosphere and ozone absorbs UV rays from sun.
• Q. 60 – Here the answer should be “Growth pole model” by François Perroux, as that model talks about propulsive firms, leading industries and agglomeration. But that answer is not even mentioned in the options provided!!
• Q. 62 – Here options A and C are correct. Since isopleth maps use both colour and line symbols.
• Q. 80 – Here options A, C and D are correct. Had the question been “correct sequence” instead of “incorrect sequence” then option B would have been correct.
• Q. 83 – Here options A, B and C are correct. Since, Net migration is the sum total of Mortality, Natality and Migration.
• Q. 88 – Here options are ambiguous. Since the ongoing schemes like National Rurban mission and Cluster development scheme focuses on cluster development and Sagarmala project focuses on Port-city oriented development.
• Q. 111 – Here the answer should be L.F. Kamtz since he coined the term “Anthro-pogeography”, Friedrich Ratzel only wrote the book titled “Anthro-pogeographie”. Thus, the answer is not even mentioned in the options provided!!
These are the questions which I feel are anomalous. There may be more since I didn’t attempt the whole paper. I urge students from other optional papers to do the same. This will make the Governor see that APPSC has committed a great blunder by conducting mains exams despite knowing that they have erred and not resolving it first!!
5. An appeal to the state legislators to reform APPSC:
Enough is enough, to select competent officers for the state the institution selecting those officers must gain respect and confidence of the public which the present APPSC lacks.
Sometimes a building becomes so dilapidated that it has to be demolished to make a new one because it can no more be renovated. The present APPSC is that dilapidated building. Thus, I would like to urge the legislators of the state to make a comprehensive reform of the APPSC – the person selected to head it must be competent enough, the examination pattern must be changed and it be made like UPSC, also exams should be error free in addition to being fair.
Qualified yet protesting candidate