June 15: Dispur’s budget for awarding computers to first division holders and those who secure 50 per cent in matric exams has gone for a toss despite the overall pass percentage of the Class X results declared today witnessing a fall from 70.38 to 69.63 per cent.
Of the 2,78,704 candidates who took the exam, 26,203 have secured first division and 68,180 second division. The results of Assam High Madrassa Examination, also declared today, saw 230 secure first division and 2,172 second.
Officials said Dispur would have to rework its budget as the number of students who will get laptops (first division) and notebooks (50 per cent) has overshot its estimates by a huge margin.
Compounding the problem is the falling value of rupee against the dollar. When the global tenders for the computers were invited in April-end, rupee was trading at Rs 52.50 against the dollar. Today’s rate is Rs 55.59. Dispur had spent around Rs 50 crore to purchase computers last year and had earmarked the same amount in this year’s budget.
“We have to really work hard to ensure we get the best bargain as these gadgets have to be imported. We will have to be careful in technology selection and also ensure that the selected firms can meet our demand. We are in a soup budget-wise but we are not complaining. It is for a good cause,” a senior official said.
Besides computers, Dispur had also decided to award the first three position holders with the Deba Kumar Bora NASA award. “Going by the results, six students have qualified for the award with three having finished joint first. “We have to take a call on whether we will send all six or the joint first position holders,” an official said.
Education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told The Telegraph this evening that he would meet chief minister Tarun Gogoi and senior officials tomorrow to discuss the matter. “We will take a call on how to go about computer distribution and the NASA trip tomorrow. But I can assure you that our government is committed to the programme.”
Last year, of the 2,73,701 candidates who appeared for the matric exam, 19,084 secured first division and 50,853 second division. In the high madarsa exams, 176 got first division while 1,519 got second division.
Seba secretary B.K. Das said though the overall pass percentage of matric results had declined marginally this year, the number of first division (above 60 per cent) and second division (45 per cent to below 60 per cent) holders had risen significantly over last year. As the government pondered over incentives for better performance by students, goof-ups and tragedies marked publication of results today.
In Gauripur in Dhubri district, of the 252 candidates of four schools, 173 candidates did not have the marks for MIL (Assamese) exam on their marksheets as they were marked absent for the exam. Of these 74 were from Gauripur Girls High School, 34 from Gauripur Sankardev Sishu Niketan, 11 from Gauripur Jatiya Bidyalaya and 54 from Asharikandi High School. Some of the candidates, their parents and guardians Gauripur Girls High School resorted to vandalism, which led CRPF and police to resort to caning.
In Majuli’s Auniati Hem Chandra High School exam centre, where students had to sit for exams again in April after wrong set of science question papers were distributed, Seba marked 18 students absent in Assamese and gave marks to one student in science, though she was absent for the exam.
In Kokrajhar, Sagar Brahma, a student of Government HS and MP School and son of Bhimraj Brahma, an agriculture department employee, allegedly committed suicide after the declaration of HSLC results today. Police suspect he took the step after failing to pass the exam.
Around 2.30pm, Sagar's friends got a text that read: “Sorry if I had done something wrong”. They rushed to his house in Agriculture Colony and found him hanging from the ceiling fan.