‘JEE (Advanced) evaluation as per pre-exam instructions’

Post-exam clarification issued only to allay fears among students on mode of evaluation: IIT-Kanpur informs Madras HC

The Registrar of Indian Institute of Technology – Kanpur on Monday informed the Madras High Court that online answer scripts of Joint Entrance Examination (Advanced), 2018, were evaluated strictly in accordance with instructions issued to candidates before the examinations. He claimed that a post examination clarification issued by him, with respect to the mode of evaluation, was only a detailed explanation of the instructions issued prior to the exam and nothing more.

Counter-affidavit

The submission was made in a counter-affidavit filed before Justice S. Vaidyanathan who had, on June 7, restrained the Registrar from evaluating the papers based on the clarification issued a day after the examinations conducted on May 20. Passing interim orders on a writ petition filed by 17-year-old L. Lakshmi Sree of Chennai, the judge had also ordered that seats should not be allotted to students if the evaluation had been carried out on the basis of the post examination clarification.

Madhu Mutyam, chairman, JEE (Advanced), 2018, IIT-Madras, had filed the counter-affidavit on behalf of the Registrar of IIT-Kanpur, the sole respondent in the case. He claimed that the writ petition had been filed on the basis of an “incorrect premise” that there had been a post examination change in the manner of evaluation of answers. “It is respectfully submitted that this is not the case. The clarification, issued by the respondent, in no way changes, alters or adds to the instructions given to the candidates.”

“To the contrary, the same only explains the manner of evaluation and in point of fact, the results of the JEE (Advanced), 2018, have been published on June 10, 2018 and the evaluation has been done on the basis of the instructions given to the candidates prior to the examination,” the counter-affidavit read. It said the clarification was issued to allay fears among students that the evaluation could be done on the basis of string of characters and not on the basis of exact numerical values entered by them.

Numerical value

Explaining the issue in detail, the court was told that before the examinations, the students were instructed to answer certain questions, for which the answers were in numerical value, in decimal notations truncated/rounded off to the second decimal place such as 6.25, 7.00, -0.33, -3.0, 30.27 and 127.30. However, after the examinations, IITs across the country were flooded with queries related to the mode of evaluation due to a scare created among students by some private coaching centres.

Hence, a clarification was issued on May 21 stating that if an answer to a question was the integer 11, all answers entered as 11, 11.0 or 11.00 would be treated as correct. It also said that if an answer was exactly the number 11.5, all answers entered as 11.5, or 11.50 would be correct. Similarly, if an answer was 11.367777777, all answers entered within a specified range of 11.36 to 11.37 would be correct. The clarification did not alter the pre-examination instructions in any way, the counter-affidavit claimed.

‘Frivolous litigation’

Though more than 1.55 lakh candidates across the country had appeared for JEE (Advanced), 2018, only five of them had filed “frivolous” litigation such as the present one in various High Courts questioning the clarification issued after the exam, the judge was told. After taking the counter-affidavit on file, the judge adjourned the case by a week for further hearing.

 Source: The Hindu

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