March 13, 2013, 12:00 am
It seems the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) enjoys autonomy in distorting Odia spellings. The CBSE Class X second language Odia question paper, examination for which was held on Monday, has at least 30 spelling and grammatical mistakes. This makes an average of 2.5 mistakes per question in the paper that had 12 questions.
"There are some errors where one can guess the right word. However, there are many mistakes where it is difficult to understand what actually the question means. I struggled a lot and brought it to the notice of my invigilator. But she could not help," said a dejected examinee.
The first question carrying 10 marks is compulsory to answer. It asks students to read a paragraph and then answer. The paragraph has two mistakes on the opening sentence. There is a word "paramira," written twice in the sentence. The word has got no meaning in Odia. Experts guessed it might be a wrong substitution for the word "parampara," which means tradition. The paragraph alone has 11 such mistakes. It is also full of grammatical errors.
The second question asks students to write an essay about three topics. The first topic asks to write about "Mahakash Gabeisana." Mahakash in Odia means space while students guessed Gabeisana to be Gabeshana, meaning research. "I was not sure. So I didn’t write on the topic and instead wrote on Indian democracy, another option given," said another student. "May be a man who doesn’t know Odia has set the questions. The authorities should have looked into it before conducting the examination. I am not good at Odia, but anyone who can read Class III Odia can figure out the blunders," said another student.
None of the 12 questions is error-free. Even names of eminent Odia personalities have been distorted. The name of eminent literary personality Sachidananda Rautray has been misspelled as Suchhidanana Routray.
The matter is in notice of school principals. Conceding the mistakes, DAV Chandrasekharpur principal Keshab Satapathy said, "Students will not be allowed to suffer in any way."
CBSE authorities said corrective actions will be taken. "If there are mistakes, we will write to the appropriate authorities in CBSE for action," CBSE regional director A S Verma told TOI. CBSE would take help of subject experts to figure out the mistakes and compensate the students in awarding marks accordingly, CBSE source said.