- Jharkhand Academic Council officer’s salary cut to pay compensation
As reported by SHAHNAWAZ AKHTAR In Telegraph
Devnandan Prasad: Guiding force. Telegraph picture
Giridih, June 22: Star student Puja Burnwal stands vindicated.
Not only has she passed the higher secondary examination with first division, the Jharkhand Academic Council has been asked to give her Rs 90,000 as compensation for harassment, under the Right to Information (RTI) act.
Puja, a student of science stream, had appeared for the council’s Intermediate exam in 2007 and secured 72 marks in physics, 70 in maths, 70 in chemistry and 49 in economics. But she got only 15 in English.
As a result, she was declared failed in the Intermediate exam.
A shocked Puja, who had passed matriculation with 74 per cent marks (with 64 in English), challenged the result and submitted Rs 100 to re-check her English paper.
When the council merely re-counted her marks instead of re-checking the paper, Puja’s mother Shanti Devi contacted RTI activist Devnandan Prasad.
Prasad, not only demanded the copy of the English answer paper but also asked for the name of the examiner. Failing to get a reply in three months, they moved the state information commission on September 27.
In the commission’s hearing on May 22, 2008, the council said they could not show the answer paper as it would affect the confidential nature of the examination.
“Against the council’s argument, I cited several examples of the Bihar Academic Council which had provided the answer sheet and examiner’s name to candidates. The commission, dismissing the argument of the council, slapped a fine of Rs 90,000 on the council and ordered them to give it to the girl as compensation. The commission also said that of the total amount, Rs 10,000 would be deducted from the salary of the information officer of council who did not provide the required information to the candidate,” said Prasad.
Meanwhile, Puja sat for the compartmental examination and secured 48 marks in English.
Thanks to this, she did manage to pass the higher secondary examination with first division.
Though victory has been sweet, Puja cannot put the past behind her just yet.
The bright student who aspired to study engineering after her Plus Two exams has had to change her career plans.
Now, she has decided to study commerce.
“Since the results of my compartmental examination came out, I knew that I had done much better than the marks given by the council. Even though the council will have to pay me a compensation, the callous act of the council has changed my life forever,” said Puja.