A day after the declaration of the Class 12 (or intermediate) results of the Bihar State Education Board (BSEB) in which more than 64% of the students had failed, students protested in Patna and at several district headquarters, demanding re-evaluation of their answer sheets.
Concerned over the dismal pass percentage of 34.25%, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar held a meeting with Education Minister Ashok Choudhary and BSEB chairman Anand Kishor.
Meanwhile, students and experts blamed the drastic fall in the pass percentage on the rampant corruption in the State’s education system which, they said, had collapsed.
A large number of students who had cleared their IIT-JEE entrance examination, too, have failed in their Class 12 board exams.
Protesting students who had gathered outside the Intermediate Board office in Patna were supported by the student wings of several political parties. Later, the students threw stones at the council office. The police responded with a lathi-charge in which over half-a-dozen students sustained injuries.
Three students from Buxar, Bhagalpur and Kaimur districts committed suicide after they failed to clear the exam. Out of a total 12.40 lakh students who took the Class 12 exams, only 8.34% scored above 60%. At the HKV School in Banka district, 80% of the students failed, while all 55 students from Rajapur village in the same district failed.
Earlier in 1996, only 10.58 students passed the Intermediate Examination after the Patna High Court intervened to ensure that there was no cheating in the exams. However, in following years, the pass percentage rose sharply, with regular reports of mass-cheating, and large-scale corruption at BSEB.
“Though the pass percentage this year is low, the successful students are real gold,” said Mr. Choudhary. Mr. Kishor, too, said that several layers of strict measures to curb unfair means had had its impact.
But for students like Rajesh Kumar, Anshuman Raj, Ankit Raj, Dev Krishna Kumar, Vishwajit Kumar and several others, the result was bad blow. They have cleared their IIT-JEE Mains exam, and done well in its Advance test but have got only 8, 12, 16 and 18 marks in Maths, Physics and Chemistry in the Intermediate examination.