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Delhi board debuts in script suit

After the two Bengal boards, it’s the turn of the Delhi-based Council for the Indian School of Certificate Examinations to drag answer-scripts into the courtroom.

This time, it is a failed examinee from St Xavier’s School who has complained to Calcutta High Court that he was awarded identical marks in the ISC (Class XII) physics paper for two consecutive years.

Anthony Pritish Nath, the petitioner, alleged that he had appeared for the exams conducted in 2002 and was declared successful by the Council, though he had scored just 36 in the physics paper.

Anthony gained admission in college with honours in mathematics on the condition that he secure pass marks in physics in ISC 2003.

Accordingly, he appeared for this year’s examination. But the results were a real shocker — he had, in a curious action replay, scored exactly 36 in physics, all over again.

This prompted Anthony to file a writ petition before Calcutta High Court and Justice Pratap Roy, after hearing his plea, directed the examination-conducting Council to re-evaluate the physics answer-script of the petitioner. Subsequently, Anthony approached the Council and prayed for re-evaluation of the paper. His request was rejected.

Anthony then moved Calcutta High Court again, pleading that the Council be asked to produce the physics answer-script.

Anthony’s lawyer Sougata Bhattacharya informed the court that since there was a rule of the Council to re-evaluate an answer-script if a candidate prayed for it, “ the refusal of the Council to re-evaluate the paper was illegal”.

After reviewing the situation, and taking into account the fact that Anthony had already spent one year studying mathematics honours, the judge pronounced that the Council must produce the answer-script in court.

“This is a peculiar situation, where a student has already spent considerable time studying an advanced course,” Justice Roy observed. “This is why I have asked for the answer-script to be produced before the court.”

This, say officials, is the first instance of the Delhi-based Council being asked to produce the answer-script of a candidate before the court.

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