Frequent leakage of question papers ahead of almost all public examinations has become a common phenomenon of Bangladesh for the last couple of years. Later the leaked papers and the original ones are found identical while matched. The smarter ones also collect the leaked questions through digital channels including Facebook, WhatsApp and Viber. ‘Punitive measures will be taken against the culprits’, ‘no chance of leakage this time’, ‘law enforcers are alert to avert the offenders’ and the like are the categorical responses of the government high ups including the Education Minister in most of the cases of leakage. Big shows before the media with some field-lever petite offenders are also very common while the masterminds are always in safe heaven resulting in gradual deterioration of the situation.
Now, let’s come to a simple calculation. There is no space of religious sentiment of the ninety percent Muslim community of Bangladesh in the current academic curricula from primary level to secondary level education in the guise of so-called secularism reshuffling the previous curricula by the ruling government of Bangladesh Awami League (BAL) and its pro leftist Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid. But the same textbooks contain huge elements of seven to eight percent Hindu community including system of Pathabali (sacrificing goats in the name of Hindu God and Goddess) and the like. Muslim culture has been tactfully replaced by the western culture in designing most of the textbooks. It means that a student gradually completes his primary and secondary level education and enters into higher secondary level with the mentality of a complete anti religious and anti-Islamic though the real meaning of secularism does not mean anti-Islam. However, the optimistic aspect is that the deep-rooted family-culture and social system of Bangladesh based on the spirit of eternal peace of Islam always positively contribute to develop sound generation for many years though Indian channels like ‘Star Jalsa’, ‘Star Plus’ and hundreds of night shows and show biz make serious adverse effects on the young generation.
Another harsh reality of present Bangladesh is that the young generation spends most of their time in operating facebook throughout the whole academic year with the perception that it’s more important as they will get question papers through it on the previous night of the exams. The scenario of the last several years is that the destructive perception of the students unexpectedly seems to be truth to them along with their guardians. Those who fail to collect the leaked questions have to be shocked ultimately in viewing the brighter results of those went after the leakage on the previous night. What an adverse effect falls upon the soft hearts of the young pupils! It is very natural that thus the whole young generations either manage questions or fail become mentally paralyzed and values of honesty and patriotism don’t carry any significance to them.
What is the overall result of it? Teaching based on religious free curricula leads students to forget the fear of resurrection before the Almighty Allah from their childhood. The worldly life is then considered to be everything by them. On the other hand, the same students gradually grow up and learn that punctuality, industry and honesty has no value at all as the result of leakers is better than that of the regular and fair students. About the last one decade the students have been facing such a gloomy reality. How can we expect to build up them as good citizens amid such rotten situation? If these huge youths become morally corrupted like evil ghosts in their matured stage after completing study – is it unrealistic? It is very logical that if the situation remains unchanged within a few years the country will filled up with so-called learned youths who will be thoroughly atheist, corrupted and selfish. They will spend busy hours just to flourish their own destiny and ensure gorgeous life-style.
Meanwhile, the situation has become deteriorated as not only the question papers of primary, secondary and higher secondary examinations are leaked out but the same scandal is now available in university level. Even the questions of the long-cherished BCS (Bangladesh Civil Service) examinations are also being leaked. The education minister might categorically utter the same words like dishonest syndicates, teachers and authorities of coaching centre are active behind this heinous practice and culprits will be booked immediately. Actually, the education minister has nothing to say except this. But the conscious citizens of the society never believe on such simple equation. Obviously, there is long-term conspiracy.
A worldwide popular theory of the imperialists is – destroy the education system of a nation if you want to destroy them. Now please come to a calculation – who do not tolerate that Bangladesh moves ahead as a moderate Muslim country? Obviously the answer will be ‘the big neighbor’. I think almost all conscious citizens of Bangladesh believe the same. So all illegal and secret supports to destroy our education through gross changes with the replacement of atheist contents have been imported mainly from the neighboring country and applied by the atheist education minister.
However, it is thoroughly a bad practice to blame others to hide self failure. So I am not interested at all to blame any neighbor or the external world. I have to mention it for the sake of reality and unearthing the root causes of frequent leakages of questions and drastic changes in academic curricula. I just want to ask those, who are going to lose all marks of their palm by twirling their hands in obedience to India, do you know that the long-established foreign policy of India is that all neighboring countries are enemy and none is friend?
Now I want to draw the attention of the readers to some incidents of question paper leakage. The headline of the English daily “The Daily Star” dated 8th February 2017 was “Allegation of SSC question paper leak, again”. The report says:
“Allegations of question paper leakage in the ongoing SSC examinations surfaced again despite education minister’s insistence that there was no possibility of question leakage this time. Students and guardians said sample questions, similar to those of the Bangla second paper under the Dhaka Board held on Sunday, were also found before the English first paper examination yesterday. Some guardians in Dhaka alleged they found sample questions on different Facebook pages the night before the exams, which were circulated through different online voice and messaging services like WhatsApp and Viber.”
Containing the sentiment of guardians on the repeated leakages of question papers The Daily Star further says, “A guardian, preferring not to be named, said, ‘if you go through some Facebook pages, you will get such questions. Then why doesn’t the government take any action?’ ‘We are not sure whether the government measures to check the leak are enough. We are afraid about the fate of upcoming exams,’ he said.
Briefing reporters two days before the examinations, Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid had said, ‘There is no possibility for the original question paper to be leaked…’ Contacted, Dhaka Board Chairman Prof Mahabubur Rahman told The Daily Star that although there was an allegation of leak of Bangla first paper questions, they found no such evidence…Contacted, Nahid (Education Minister) said following the allegation of leak of English first paper question on Facebook, the officials of Dhaka Board checked with the original questions on Monday midnight and became certain that the questions were not leaked.”
What a great liar the education minister is! Only within a week the falsehood of the minister came to light. The headline of the English daily “The Dhaka Tribune” dated 14 February 2017 was “Six held for leaking SSC, HSC questions”. The news was also covered by almost all mainstream national dailies, television channels and online news portals. The report of the Dhaka Tribune says: “The Detective Branch of police have arrested six of a gang involved with leaking SSC and HSC examination question papers on different social media and messaging platforms…DB sources said they first arrested the syndicate leader Faysal and based on information provided by him, the DB team arrested the rest.”
On the same day the headline of “The Daily Star” was “6 held over SSC question paper lead”. The report says: “The arrestees were admins of various Facebook groups such as All Board Examinee, SSC Question 2017 Dhaka Board and SSC Question 2017 Barisal Board, the police official said. They distributed fake question papers via messenger group on Facebook using fake IDs and on messaging site Whatsapp. Each question paper was sold between Tk 500 to Tk 25,000.”
Referring to a research of the TIB (Transparency International Bangladesh) the Daily Star published another report on 20th February 2017. The headline of the report was “Question paper leak: A menace in Bangladesh”. The report says: “Leak of examination papers has become a common phenomenon in Bangladesh. Merely doing some research on Facebook can help you get your hands on question papers prior to an exam. A TIB report mentions 63 allegedly leaked JSC and PES exam question papers between 2012 and 2015. This year’s ongoing SSC exam debacle is yet another example.”
An education minister of any civilized state can’t hold his ministerial position after such gross scandal of repeated question papers leak. In fact, in such situation the minister should step down willingly without any pressure. But it’s a matter of great regret that the minister of Bangladesh, a country of all possible, has little head-ace about it. He is holding his position without any hesitation and frequently exaggerating before media whenever the incident of leakage is being reported. The questions of vital subjects like mathematics, science and English are also being leaked out. Students and guardians are as if helpless before the powerful syndicate.
The guardians and civil society are continuously alarming the government against the question papers leak. But the government especially the education minister has no feelings. As a result, a leakage of questions on the previous night and the huge number of GPA 5 in the results is the common scenario of Bangladesh for the last couple of years. The commitment of controlling question papers leakage by the education minister has become a matter of joke to the people.
Even a good number of government employees along with ruling party men are involved in this scandal. For example, I like to mention a report published in the English daily The New Age with the headline “Govt, non-govt officials involved in question leakage: TIB” on August 5, 2015. The report says: “Many government and non-government officials were involved with question paper leakage of public examinations, according to a Transparency International Bangladesh (TIB) study. A TIB study on ‘Question leakage process, cause and remedy for public examination’ suggests that some coaching centres and guide traders and a section of ruling party’s student wing were involved in the leaking and distribution process.”
The education minister Nurul Islam Nahid on 16 March 2017 again uttered the same futile words. For example the headline of The Prothom Alo English version on 16 March 2017 was “Action to be taken against question paper leak: Nahid”. A portion of the report is: “Action will be taken against those who were involved in question papers leak. Police have already submitted their report in this regard and steps will be taken accordingly, he added”.
However, there is no symptom of development. The scenario is almost unchanged. Rather, in some cases it deteriorates. Even, the report of leakage in the university exams publishes in the media. For example, the headline of the English daily “The New Age” dated 6 March 2017 was “IU suspends teacher, officers, expels student over question paper leakage”. Some parts of the report are as follows:
“The authorities of Islamic University in Kushtia on Monday (6 March 2017) suspended a teacher, two officers and expelled a student after an investigation found their involvement in the leaking of ‘F’ unit admission test question paper in 2016-17 academic year. The authorities also cancelled the ‘F’ unit admission test under Applied Science and Technology faculty. The decision was made at the 233rd syndicate meeting around 5:00pm with the university vice-chancellor professor M Harun-Ur-Rashid Askari in the chair.”
Even the term of the ruling BAL is blackened with the scandal of the leak of much-dreamed BCS (Bangladesh Civil Service) examinations. The written test of the 33rd BCS examinations was cancelled. The headline of the Daily Star on 7th July 2012 was “Written tests of 33rd BCS put off”. The report said, “Bangladesh Public Service Commission yesterday postponed the written test of the 33rd Bangladesh Civil Service examination scheduled to start today in the wake of question leak allegations.”
In fact, blaming teachers, guardians or students is not the solution of the scar. The statement of the education minister is also nothing but eyewash. To solve this problem we have to go to the root and attach plaster over the main scar. But I am almost sure that the running government – autocrat and fascist in nature and democratic in name and holding power by the blind support of India – has no capability and moral strength to go through the root.
Just remember, at our childhood we learned the moral lessons in our primary and secondary level like “Honesty is the best policy”, “As you so as you reap”, “Think before you act, not after it”, “In greed there is sin, in sin there is death”, “Black will take no other hue”, “Cut your coat according to your cloth”, and the like through different stories. We had many religious and moral lessons based on historical events like the dignity of teachers through the incident of the son of Emperor Alamgir and a teacher. But in the same period the current generation passes time in facebook, gets questions on the previous night of the exams and obtains GPA 5 without any hard labor and regular study. In our childhood we enjoyed mega serials like “Tipu Sultan”, “Alif Laela” and the like. The new generation enjoys Indian “Star Jalsha”, “Star Plus” and the like full of nuisance elements like extra marital affairs and complicated family conspiracy. Meanwhile, the ruling secular government has postponed the airing of “The Peace TV Bangla”, “The Diganta Television” and “The Islamic Television”.
What’s the solution of this long-term conspiracy to make human ghost in the ninety percent Muslim populated Bangladesh? I think it is the duty of every conscious citizen to spread moral lessons to the young generation in the domestic life. Family library is a must with books of religious lessons and moral values. We have to remember that our beloved country is a pure place of great persons like Hazrat Shahjalal (rah.), Hazrat Shah Paran (rah.), Hazrat Shah Maghdum (rah.) and the like. Those great personalities have taught us how to love the whole humanity and peacefully live with all ethnic groups and honor each others. Our generation should not be oblivious to our long-rooted religious lessons of eternal peace and it’s the duty of us to convey the messages to the young generation. We have to have clear knowledge about our real enemies and how to face them.