Passing chits, whispering answers and showing the answer sheet to the person sitting next to you – cheating in exams is nothing new to us. At some or the other point of time, we all have done a bit of it.
But we Indians have this habit of taking everything to extreme levels, including cheating in the exams. For the past few years, levels of malpractice in examinations in India has grown drastically and you’d be shocked to know the kind of ways used to cheat.
Significantly Known Cases
One of the biggest and most significantly famous case of cheating in exams was the Bihar mass malpractice case of 2014 and 2015 which made it to global news.
Over 300 people were arrested after blatantly climbing walls of the exam center and passing notes to students from windows during examination time.
This picture went viral.
Another case was of Uttar Pradesh where the government upped their efforts to prevent cheating and so students chose to skip the exam itself. Around 10% of the total students, that is close to half a million students, did not appear for the tests.
At the college and university levels also, papers are often leaked and entrance exam rules are breached.
Over 2.8 million school students were ordered to resit for exams in NCR region this year in April and several entrance exams including NEET, MCET, AIMS were rescheduled for a second time, in the past couple of years.
The Cheating Mafia
There are fixed rates ranging from several tens of thousands to lakhs. Cheating methods range from chits, notes to micro prints, and use of WhatsApp to camera-Bluetooth headset pairs on shirt buttons and in bras have been identified as most common.
When I wrote board exams in 2016, print shops earnings doubled in one month through micro-xerox of answers done for students. And it was quite a scene to watch the floors of washrooms at the exam center filled with torn slips and notes of answers every single day after the exam.
Deals take place on phones and numbers are acquired months before the exams. What’s shocking is how some parents are supporting this by not calling it cheating, but by calling it “a way out for students who are academically weak including their own.”
Personally, I am excited to see a movie on a topical and relevant issue like this: Cheat India, with Emraan Hashmi and a bunch of actors from theatre and real life.
Not only does the movie seem to talk about this menace, which no one else has addressed so far, but features Hashmi in an amazing grey-ish role, the kind we have always liked to see him in.
There is no doubt that the film’s teaser and first poster have created a lot of intrigue and excitement, and I am eagerly awaiting the trailer this week.
The film releases on the Republic Day Weekend, right after our exams, which makes it a treat for us millennial students.
India’s cheating industry, or the cheating-mafia is a kind of organized fraud that is elevating exponentially and is a clear sign of a broken education system as quoted by Yamini Aiyar, chief executive of the Center for Policy Research.
Probable Reasons For Turning Towards Malpractice In Exams
While some students have become habitual of it, some cheat in the exams for particular subjects they are weak in and very often, some are influenced by peers.
The Indian society gives a lot of importance to academic achievements and toppers in education who are given priority and respect much more than the other students.
Reputation with parents and teachers and the constant pressure from them to secure more and more marks is a major reason for malpractice.
The first time I saw my best friend cheat in an exam was after he was told by the school mathematics teacher, “Aditya, you made a mistake taking math. You should have dropped it. You won’t even pass board exams.” I am sure that triggered a sense of fear in him of whether he would pass or not and he sought to taking slips for the exam instead of studying well.
Our education system needs a dramatic overhaul. For that, we need educated leaders in power who will introduce change in the way students are taught.
Till that does not happen, India will continue to remain governed by an old-fashioned system that lays undue emphasis on text books and mugging.
Looking forward to Cheat India: a movie around a system ridden with gaps and loopholes which is open to misuse and corruption.
Image Source: Google Images
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