Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Public Service Commission (OPSC), the premier agency authorised to conduct recruitment to entry level appointments to various civil services in the State has always been held in high esteem. However, massive irregularities alleged during several exams conducted by the commission and evaluation of answer papers continues to raise eyebrows over transparency in OPSC.
According to sources, the OPSC had conducted an exam for the recruitment of two lecturers in the State Government-run Art and Craft College in 2012. A candidate Chhatrapati Dibya Ranjan Biswal of Soro area in Balasore district had appeared the exam and pinned his hopes on getting a good result.
However, Biswal has alleged that irregularity has been done during the evaluation of the exam paper. Biswal claimed that though he had scored 45, his marks were initially reduced to 44, then to 43 and finally cut down to 42 following which he failed the exam for just one mark. He further alleged that even a wrong question was asked in the exam.
Despite approaching OPSC time and again over the issue, Biswal however, failed to get any response from the commission. When he finally moved the Odisha Administrative Tribunal, the court, while hearing the case on March 24, 2017, directed the OPSC for the re-correction of the merit list. However, the commission allegedly did not follow the court's order.
After failing to get justice despite moving from pillar to post, Biswal finally sought help from the media.
“I found lot of mistakes in the evaluation of the answer sheet. Initially, I was awarded 45 marks out of 50. But later it was intentionally reduced to 42,” alleged Chhatrapati Dibya Ranjan.
Chhatrapati Dibya Ranjan’s father, Ashok Kumar Biswal claimed, “An apparent corrupt procedure has been adopted while evaluating the answer paper, but despite our repeated pleas, we did not get any positive response from the concerned officials. Even the court order was also not heeded which is quite shocking."
Recently, after OTV had reported alleged irregularities in the evaluation of answer sheets of Odisha Administrative Service (OAS) Examination conducted by the OPSC, the concerned complainant was threatened by the commission.
The candidate Rajat Mishra of Dhamnagar in Bhadrak district alleged that OPSC has threatened that he would be debarred from taking any further examinations conducted by the commission.
Besides, the Information & Public Relations Department had issued a notification saying that candidates who take the help of media over alleged irregularities in the OPSC exams will be barred from taking part in OPSC exams in future, the candidate alleged.
“I was told by an OPSC official that my decision to report the matter to the media was not appropriate. But I said that I had reported the truth only when mediapersons asked about the irregularities, however, he threatened me to debar me from OPSC exams in future,” Rajat said.
Meanwhile following reports of several incidents of alleged irregularities in the OPSC, different students’ unions have threatened to hit streets.
“No candidate should be afraid of reporting the irregularities being done to them by the OPSC. The students Congress is with them till they get justice. We will agitate over the issue,” informed Student Congress leader Itish Pradhan.
Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) national secretary Abhilash Panda, said, “The OPSC is considered as a very reputed recruitment agency of the State but unfortunately it is facing acute unemployment challenge. Therefore, the OPSC should maintain transparency and take steps to help aggrieved candidates.”
Despite repeated efforts, the concerned OPSC officials failed to comment over the allegations.