Bowing under pressure from Presidency and other elite college-affiliates, Calcutta University — for the first time in recent memory — has decided to allow a review of answer-scripts of all four honours papers of students who sat for the BA and B.Sc Part I examinations last year.
A large number of students from reputed colleges like the state-run Presidency fared poorly in many honours papers, including political science, which did not register a single first-class. The results fiasco caused such a flutter that there were queries from chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s office, as well.
“The principals of Presidency and some other well-known colleges had approached us to allow a review of answer-scripts of all four honours papers of their students. We could not accept their proposal then, because we were more busy dealing with those who had applied for a review of two papers, under the normal rules. Now that the review results have been announced, we will consider the applications of examinees seeking a review of all four papers,” said Suranjan Das, CU pro vice-chancellor, academic.
About 70,000 students had appeared for the examinations. After the results were announced, over 100 students from Presidency, Lady Brabourne, St Xavier’s and Bethune colleges applied for a special review of all four honours papers in subjects like political science, economics, history, chemistry and botany.
Despite queries from the secretariat of the chief minister, the university initially asked the colleges to follow the normal review rules, under which students can apply for a review of answer-scripts of any two of their honours papers. So, students were asked to select any two papers for review. Now, the remaining papers will be reviewed.
Suranjan Das, however, was quick to clarify that this was a one-off measure and would not set a precedent. “This is only for the candidates of last year’s BA and B.Sc Part I examinations,” he announced.
Sources in the university, however, said the authorities had taken the decision to allow the aggrieved students of Presidency and the other reputed colleges to apply for a review of all the four honours papers. Permission has, apparently, been granted by vice-chancellor Ashis Banerjee, exercising his special powers.
Officials in the examination department said students of the colleges seeking re-evaluation of all the four papers will also have to give an undertaking, saying that they would be satisfied with the marks awarded after the review and there would be no complaints thereafter, even if their marks were lowered. Presidency College has already given such an undertaking.
“I was really upset with the results, as some of my best students had fared poorly in chemistry, history and botany. I appreciate the university’s move and will soon send the undertakings seeking the special review,” said Gopa Dutta, principal of Lady Brabourne College.