The Jharkhand Public Services Commission (JPSC) is relying on Indian Statistical Institute to figure out where it stands on the credibility meter.
On Tuesday, the JPSC informed Jharkhand High Court that it had sent its answer sheets of the fourth civil services examination (preliminary test) to Indian Statistical Institute-Calcutta to verify the merits of the scaling system of awarding marks, and were waiting for the reputable cradle’s reply.
A division bench of Chief Justice Prakash Tatia and Justice Aparesh Kumar Singh was hearing a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by Sanjeev Kumar and Vishal Anand, who had challenged the scaling system of evaluation followed by the JPSC.
The petitioners stated that the scaling system was faulty and that the Commission had not applied the correct formula to evaluate the answer sheets.
The petitioners further said that the JPSC had published the notification to recruit as many as 219 posts on February 18, 2010 and conducted the preliminary examination on March 23, 2011, more than 13 months later.
There are 23 subjects under the JPSC. The commission came under the scanner when the final tally of several students who cleared their preliminary test exceeded the maximum marks.
For instance, some examinees scored as much as 234.96 in their optional paper that carried a maximum of 200 marks. The petitioners said that the exam should be cancelled as many questions were repeated and the formula was faulty.
The petitioners’ counsel told the court that in all its earlier examinations, the Commission had not implemented the scaling system and even the Supreme Court had observed in one of its decisions that the innovative scaling system has created huge disparities among the examinees.
The JPSC however defended the scaling method adopted by it to mark the examinees.
It stated that the process was fair and widely accepted.
“The scaling system is like the socialist system. It rationalises the wide disparity in the marks obtained across different subjects. It is the acceptable norm of statistics and being followed by the other state commissions as well,” argued controller of examination Rati Kant Jha.
Elaborating further, Jha said that the total number of marks scored by all candidates in the exams was divided by the number of applicants. Similarly, the total marks of all students in any one subject is added and then divided by the number of examinees of that particular subject for a mean average.
Then both the figures were put in a statistical formula to ascertain the percentage of successful candidates. “The aspects of the formula and calculation are being handled by experts of BIT Mesra,” Jha said.