The Times of India, 25th Sep, 2015
Just around eight months are left for the next joint entrance examinations, but the West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination board is far from putting its house in order.
Sample this: The date of the examination is yet to be finalized, the rules and regulations are yet to be framed (though the WBJEE Board Act was promulgated in 2014) and several key posts of office bearers are yet to be appointed. Add to this, the board vice-chairman deciding to stay away from all confidential matter as his kin is appearing in the examination next year and finally, board chairman Bhaskar Gupta is on the verge of resignation over his frail health.
“I may not join the board anymore till my health conditions improve,” Gupta said.
“It will be mayhem from November as the JEE preparations will begin in full swing. The board has to select the question setters and identify the moderators. The current chairman, Bhaskar Gupta, had a wide network that made the process a cake-walk. But now, there will be trouble since Gupta may be putting in his papers any day,” said a source.
Election Commission usually takes cognizance off exam dates before declaring poll schedules. Since the date of 2016 JEE is not yet fixed, most dates will be booked for other national examinations. Hence JEE may yet again have to be taken on a weekday. This year was the first time since 1962 when JEE had to be taken on weekdays.
WBJEE Board Act 2014 has been enacted and has come into force. “It was said that government will prepare rules and the JEE board will prepare regulations. But rules are pending and thus no regulations could be framed. The board is functioning on an ad-hoc method,” said the source.
In absence of rules and regulations, the posts of several office bearers are vacant, including law officer, controller of exams and accounts officer. ” If recruitment rules are not framed, PSC can’t notify for recruitment. The recruitment rules are prepared by the department and then sent to the finance department for vetting and finally to the law department. After the entire process is complete, it is sent to the cabinet for approval. It won’t be easy to make appointments before the exam,” the source said.
The only silver lining is that the 24 board members have been nominated and have held their first meeting as per the Act. But with office-bearers missing, there is no one to coordinate for the exam. The board has to hire servers as massive web crowd is involved. The technical knowhow was dealt by the deputy chairman. He was the liaison officer between the board and the exam conducting organization based in Delhi. He was also the one who fixed all cyber bugs.
“In his absence, no one has been given charge. There is yet no one to monitor the online filling up of forms, issuing admit cards, scrutinizing the scanned pictures and signatures,” the source pointed out.