Daijiworld Media Network - Bengaluru (SP)
Bengaluru, Mar 18: Karnataka Education Act (Ammendment) Bill 2017, under which there are provisions to send teaching staff boycotting answer sheet evaluation work behind the bars for a term up to six months, succeeded in getting the approval of the legislative council. The bill will now become act once it is passed by the legislative assembly and signed by the state governor. Fine up to one lac rupees can be imposed on teachers at fault instead of jail term.
The bill also has provision to sentence people involved with question paper leakage and examination irregularities to five years of jail term and to a fine up to a maximum of five lac rupees.
The timing of the assent given to the bill is of importance, as the bill, which had given rise to lot of controversy, and against which lecturers and teachers had fought tooth and nail, has been passed at a time when the PU lecturers have decided to boycott evaluation work of II PU answer sheets.
File photo of lecturers protesting
The state government, which suffered loss of face and came under flak from various quarters after repeated leakage of PU question papers last year, was under the compulsion to do something fast. It therefore came up with the measures to take disciplinary action against the teaching staff who boycott evaluation work and also plug question paper leakage and examination irregularities by bringing in strict provisions to punish the guilty. The bill, which seeks to ammend Karnataka Education Act, had got the assent of the state assembly when it was tabled in February this year. At the council, the opposition objected to several provisions of the bill, which they said were not justifiable, after which the chief minister agreed to send it to review committee, which was asked to submit its report within 15 days.
As per the recommendation of this committee, education minister, Tanveer Sait, moved the bill on Friday. Immediately, opposition BJP and JD(S) members walked out, opposing the bill. Still, the bill was tabled and approved through voice vote. The BJP members were particularly opposed to the stern provisions relating to jail sentence and fine, and the provision to debar students indulging in examination irregularities for a period of three years.
Tanveer Sait tried to assuage the feelings of the opposition, insisting that the ammendment aims at bringing reforms in education system, and it serves the interests of the students and their parents. He stressed that the bill was not meant to target teaching staff and specific educational institutions. The minister said that the provision to debar students was included in view of the fact that some educational institutions are found to be involved with examination irregularities with the aim of securing 100 percent result. He said that guilty have to be punished to thwart people from indulging in such activities.