Day one of the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) examination in the city was off to a smooth start on Thursday. However, the uncertainty over assessment and results continues as the junior college teachers stay firm on their boycott call.
Over 1.22 lakh students appeared for language papers, while exams were conducted for 12 subjects – nine in the first half and three in the second half. The Maharashtra State Board for Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) officials said they received no complaints from the centres across the city.
"Of the total students, 1.03 lakh students appeared for the Marathi paper. According to the reports I received from various centres in the city, the exam has started without any problems," said Laxmikant Pandey, chairperson of the board's Mumbai division.
Students too were relieved to not find errors in the question papers. "Ahead of the exam, there were so many problems in pre-lists and hall tickets so everyone was worried but we were happy to find the paper error free and simple," said Amruta Jadhav, student of Ambedkar College, who wrote her Marathi paper.
The board's helpline did not receive any major complaints. Instead, it was flooded with last-minute doubts from students. "The phone calls in the morning were related to last minute preparation, provision for grace marks and how to optimise your score," said a counsellor from the board's helpline. The board also received several queries regarding seat numbers and ways to get to the exam centre, said the counsellor.
Meanwhile, in Pune, the chief moderators' meeting was boycotted by moderators from all the nine division. The meeting happens after a paper is conducted to discuss the model answers and marking. "We had informed the board in advance that we will not conduct any work related to assessment unless the state issues a Government resolution with regards to our demands," said Anil Deshmukh, secretary of the Maharashtra State Federation of Junior College Teachers' Organisation, an umbrella body of 60,000 junior college teachers.
"What the teachers are doing is not right. Delay in assessment might mean that the results may be delayed. We hope that the state issues the government resolution at the earliest and the exams and results are conducted as per schedule," said Gangadhar Mamane, chairperson of the board.
A total of 42 cases of cheating were found across the state. Of these, 5 were from the Mumbai division. "In the Mumbai division, a case of dummy representation was detected at CKP Vidyalaya in Panvel. Police investigation is on and we are awaiting details. Three cases of copying were found in the Thane region and one in Mumbai," said Laxmikant Pandey, chairperson of the Board's Mumbai division.
One seat number, two centres
A night before her Punjabi paper, Gagandeep Kaur, a student of Khalsa College was shocked to know that her seat number appeared at both, Ruia and Podar College, Matunga. "Some friends of mine checked the lists and my seat number was found on the both the lists. My parents had to come all the way from Mulund to sort it out," said Kaur. She appeared for the examination from Ruia College as her name was on the list at Podar College only for one day.
Girl misses exam as form never reached the board
Shraddha Padave could not appear for the board examination as she did not receive her hall ticket. A resident of Bhandup, Padave had filled up the form 17 (for private candidates) but did not get a hall ticket. "I submitted the form in the college that I studied in class XI but it never reached the board so the board could not issue a hall ticket for me. By the time I approached the board, they said the deadline was over. I will now appear in the October exam," said Padave.