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Kuntal Choudhary v/s Board of Secondary Education & Another

    Civil Writ Petition No. 1979 of 2014

    Decided On, 04 November 2015

    At, High Court of Rajasthan Jodhpur Bench

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE SANGEET LODHA

    For the Petitioner: Rajesh Joshi, Vineet R. Dave, Advocates. For the Respondent: B.L. Bhati, Government Counsel.



Judgment Text

1. By way of this writ petition, the petitioner who had appeared in Senior Secondary Examination 2012-13 is seeking directions to the respondents to re-evaluate her answer sheets.

2. The relevant facts are that the petitioner appeared in Senior Secondary Examination conducted by the Board of Secondary Education, Rajasthan ('the Board'), during the academic session 2012-13, with the subjects Hindi Compulsory, English Compulsory, Geography, Drawing and English Literature. The result of the examination was declared and the mark sheet was issued. The petitioner secured 417 marks out of 500 marks i.e 83. 40%. The petitioner secured 30 mark

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s out of 80 in the paper of English Literature.

3. The petitioner applied for re-evaluation of answer sheets of three papers i.e. Hindi Compulsory, English Compulsory and English Literature. The re-evaluation was not permitted, however, the result of re-totalling was declared by the respondent-Board.

4. The petitioner also applied for photo copies of the answer sheets, which were supplied to her. On perusal of the answer sheets of English Literature, the petitioner came to know that in respect of many questions attempted by her, no marks were awarded by the examiner. As per the question paper of English Literature, many questions set out were bifurcated in three or more parts and the marks were allocated to each part of the questions yet, the petitioner was not awarded separate marks for each part accordingly. It is submitted that on account of award of lesser marks in the paper of English Literature, the petitioner stands deprived of the place in the merit list. Hence, this petition.

5. On 23.5.14, while issuing notices to the petitioner, an interim order was passed by this court directing the respondents not to destroy the answer sheets of the petitioner's examination of the subject English Literature.

6. The respondent Board has filed a reply to the show cause notice, taking the stand that there is no provision for reevaluation and therefore, the re-totalling of the marks obtained by the petitioner in all the three papers as applied for, was made, however, there was no change in the marks obtained and the petitioner was informed accordingly. It is submitted that in absence of any provision in the relevant rules providing for reevaluation of the answer sheets, the petitioner has no right to claim re-evaluation. The averments made in the petition regarding the marks being not awarded to the petitioner for different parts of the questions as per the allocation made, has not been specifically controverted by the respondent. No justification for not awarding the marks for each part of the questions has been set out either.

7. Drawing the attention of this court to the question paper and the answer sheets of the paper of English Literature, learned counsel appearing for the petitioner contended that question no. 7 and 8 are bifurcated in three parts, each carrying 1 mark, however, in both the questions, the petitioner was awarded 2 marks each in lump sum whereas, she had attempted all the three parts of both the questions. Question no. 9 was bifurcated in three parts and the examinees were required to attend 2 out of 3 parts, each part carrying 6 marks, totalling 12 marks, the petitioner attempted both the parts, however, she was awarded 3 marks in part (iii) attempted, however, no marks were awarded for part (i). Similarly, in question no. 10, which was bifurcated in five parts and the examinee was required to attempt 4 out of 5, each question carrying 3 marks, totalling 12 marks, the petitioner attempted part (i) (ii) (iii) & (v), however, she was not awarded any marks for the part (i) (ii) & (iii) and in part (iv), she was awarded 3 marks. Similar grievance is raised by the 4 petitioner in respect of question no. 1 & 2 as well.

8. Indisputably, as per the question paper, allocation of marks for the bifurcated parts of questions was made and the examiner was required to evaluate the answer of each part and award the marks separately but, apparently, the petitioner has not been awarded the marks for each part as per the allocation of marks and the instructions issued by the Board to the examiners for award of the marks, also stand flouted. In this regard, the copy of the question paper of English Literature and photo copy of the answer sheet of the petitioner placed on record are self explanatory. As noticed here in above, the specific averment made in the writ petition regarding the apparent error in award of the marks to the petitioner in the paper of English Literature, are not controverted by the respondent. Moreover, on being asked by the court about the justification of not awarding the marks to the petitioner for all the parts of various questions attempted by her, the learned Government Counsel had no answer, except that there is no provision for re-evaluation of answer sheet and therefore, the petitioner cannot claim the evaluation of the answer sheets and the result declared by the Board has to be taken as final.

9. It is true that in absence of any provision in the relevant rules examinee have no right to claim or demand re-evaluation of the answer sheet but then, when the facts regarding the gross error/negligence on the part of the examiner in re-evaluation of the answer sheets, is apparent on the face of record, in the considered opinion of this court, it would be unfair to non suit the petitioner solely on the ground that relevant rules does not provide for re-evaluation of the answer sheets. The petitioner cannot be made to suffer on account of gross negligence on the part of the examiner in evaluating the answer sheets, more so when, the evaluation made is proved to be demonstrably wrong.

10. In this view of the matter, this court is of the considered opinion that the claim of the petitioner for re-evaluation of answer sheet of the subject English Literature, deserves to be accepted.

11. Accordingly, the writ petition is disposed of with the directions to the respondent-Board of Secondary Education to get re-evaluated the answer sheet of the petitioner of the subject English Literature of Senior Secondary Examination 2012-13 by an examiner other than the examiner, who had earlier evaluated the answer of the petitioner of the said subject. The entire exercise regarding re-evaluation of the answer sheet and the declaration of the result thereafter, shall be completed within a period of one month from the date of receipt of certified copy of this order. No order as to costs.
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