As reported by SOUMEN BHATTACHARJEE in telegraphindia.com on 26 April 2008:
The Telegraph - Calcutta (Kolkata) | Metro | Board moves court to block scrutiny
Board moves court to block scrutiny
The West Bengal Board of Secondary Education has dragged the state information commission to court for pressuring it to disclose the marks awarded to two disgruntled students for each answer they gave in last year’s Madhyamik examination.
This is the first instance of a directive from the information commission being challenged in court.
The board’s move means Prasanta Saha and Pritam Das will have to wait longer to know whether they are within their rights to ask how many marks the evaluators gave them for each question they answered in the eight compulsory papers.
Board secretary Swapan Sarkar declined comment, but another official said the petition in Calcutta High Court was meant to discourage other students from following the duo’s example. “If 1,000 candidates follow in their steps, it will leave the board in a very uncomfortable position.”
Prasanta and Pritam, who sat for the Madhyamik last year and scored above 60 per cent each, felt they deserved more marks.
The duo first wrote to the board in October, seeking to know the scoring pattern in eight papers under the Right to Information Act.
“The board did not respond, forcing us to move the first appellate authority (Ranjit Roy, the deputy secretary of the school education department) in December. When Roy’s ruling was turned down, too, we moved the commission,” Prasanta said.
Roy had asked the board to show the two students the front pages of their answer scripts, where the marks awarded for each answer are mentioned in a box.
Pritam said the board could have easily acceded to his and Prasanta’s request. “We did not want to see the answer scripts. We only asked for the marks.”
The boys had asked for a “certified” sheet of paper with their scores for each answer written on it.
Commission secretary Nandan Roy said the board could not get away by moving court. “Since the appellate authority and also the information commissioner (Arun Bhattacharya) asked the board to disclose some information, it is legally bound to do so or move court in defence. The board chose the second option, but we too will contest it in court.”
Sources said the board was stonewalling attempts to use the information act to seek details about the evaluation process in examinations because it did not have the requisite infrastructure to handle such requests.