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Fine of Rs 10 crore, life term: What is Uttarakhand’s new anti-cheating law

GS Paper 2

Syllabus: Government Policies

 

Source: Indian Express

 Context: The Uttarakhand Competitive Examination (Measures For Control and Prevention of Unfair Means in Recruitment) Ordinance, 2023, which has provisions of fines up to Rs 10 crore and life imprisonment for the guilty has been given nod by the governor

  • There have been continuous agitations against multiple paper leaks in Uttarakhand since 2016

  

Provisions of the anti-cheating law

  • Applicable to: public examinations for recruitment to posts under the state government, autonomous bodies run by the government, and authorities, corporations, and institutions operated with grants of the state government.
  • If any examinee is caught cheating or causing another examinee to cheat in a competitive examination (online and offline) or to have indulged in unfair means, he shall be:
    • punishable with imprisonment for three years and with a minimum fine of Rs 5 lakh.
    • If the fine is not paid, the examinee shall be jailed for another 9 months.
  • If any person, printing press, service provider contracted or ordered for examination, management for conducting an examination, or any person and organization authorized to keep and transport the examination material, any employee of the examination authority, limited liability partnership, coaching centre, or any other institution has indulged in conspiracy or other unfair means, they shall be punished with a jail term of not less than 10 years, which may extend to life imprisonment.
  • An applicant found cheating will be:
    • debarred for two to five years from the date of the chargesheet
    • And in case of conviction, from all competitive exams for 10 years.
    • All the properties earned using unfair means will be seized.
    • The offences are cognizable, non-bailable, and non-compoundable.

  

UP’s anti-cheating law of 1992

  • In the late 1980s and early 90s, public examinations in Uttar Pradesh frequently witnessed allegations of cheating, involving officials, teachers, students, and even local gangsters.
  • The Kalyan Singh government promulgated a stringent anti-cheating Act which aimed to end the practice of mass copying in school and university examinations and contained a provision that any student found copying would be handcuffed and sent to jail.

 

Issues with academic cheating/copying

  • Compromises merit
  • Unfair advantage
  • Discourages hard work
  • Lack of personal growth
  • This may lead to dropouts

  

Benefits provided by the Law

  • This adds to the Credibility of the educational system
  • Discourages cheating
  • Ensures quality of academics is maintained
  • Encourages ethical behaviour