Vikash Sharma

Hundreds of teachers on Thursday staged a demonstration in front of the Board of Secondary Education (BSE) Odisha headquarters in Cuttack alleging irregularities in the conduct of the special Odisha Teacher Eligibility Test (OTET). The teachers from different districts congregated at the BSE office and staged the demonstration demanding an award of grace marks or a reduction in pass percentage.

“The special OTET was held in August. We were first appointed as teachers in the year 2000 and there was no guideline for appearing in the special OTET. Had we known, we would have appeared in the past. But the guidelines were issued by the government in 2012,” said Jyoti Bhusan Nayak, a teacher.

According to Nayak, most of the teachers were hoping that the state government would consider our demands.

“Even if no grace marks is possible, we want that the government and the BSE official should have allowed candidates to pass at 40-50 percent marks in the special OTET. But unfortunately, the concerned officials have refuted our demands,” Nayak added.

Firdous Jamil, another teacher said, “It is now almost three days we are facing hardships and running to the Board office. Be it centre scratch or malpractice, there have been irregularities in the conduct of Special OTET since 2012. But those who were booked for malpractice have cleared the exam but several other teachers are facing inconvenience."

“We have been running to the BSE office so that we get some grace marks. The results were published on January 9 and the OMR sheet was released yesterday. Had the OMR sheet been published earlier, we would have filled up forms again.” Jamil added.

According to Jamil, there were several in-service teachers who would be retiring in the next few years.

The BSE officials could not be contacted over the allegations of teachers.

(Reported by Biswajit Acharya)