Around 50 students writing the mid-term examination at a college in Karnataka's Haveri district were forced to wear cartons on their heads to avoid copying in exams.
The pictures of students of Bhagat PU college wearing cartons on their heads and writing the exam inside a classroom were shared widely on social media. The front side of the cartons were cut for the students to breathe and see but not allow them to see anything to their left or right. There were also some students seen without wearing cartons on their heads.
"A notice has been issued to Bhagat Pre-University College seeking explanation for forcing its students to wear cardboard boxes (cartons) while writing exams to prevent them from copying," a Haveri district Deputy Director of Public Instruction (DDPI) official told IANS on phone.
The incident, which took place on Wednesday, came to light when photographs and videos showing the students were shared on social media on Friday. The students were writing papers in Economics and Chemistry as part of the mid-term exams conducted in their classroom.
"Whatever be the purpose, they (students) cannot be made to wear cartons for writing exams. There is no rule or advice from us," said the official.
Reacting to the incident, state Education Minister S Suresh Kumar said that such an attempt was not acceptable. "Nobody has any right to treat anybody more so students like animals. This perversion will be dealt with aptly," tweeted Suresh.
This is totally unacceptable. Nobody has any right to treat anybody more so students like animals. This pervertion will be dealt with aptly. https://t.co/y69J0XcTA6— S.Suresh Kumar, Minister - Govt of Karnataka (@nimmasuresh) October 18, 2019
Defending their action, college head MB Satish claimed to the media that a college in Bihar had used a similar method to check rampant copying during exams and had been widely appreciated on social media.
"We tried to see how it works as a trial and told the students in advance that boxes would be given to each of them to wear before writing the exam. No student was forced to wear them and it was optional," he added.
(With IANS inputs)