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Internet services suspended in 27 Assam districts during govt exam hours

August 29, 2022

Internet services across 27 districts of Assam were suspended for over four hours on Sunday for the second time this month to prevent possible malpractices during a written examination for recruitment in various state government departments.

After completion of the examination, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that fees of unsuccessful candidates will be sent to their bank accounts.

The authorities decided to go ahead with their decision to suspend internet services during exam hours, after the Gauhati High Court refused to stay it following a writ petition against the order.

Besides, prohibitory orders under Section 144 have been clamped in all the 27 districts where the examinations were conducted, a senior official said.

Overall, more than 14.30 lakh candidates are expected to appear in three days for the recruitment test to fill up nearly 30,000 Grade III and IV posts in various government departments.

While the Grade-IV tests were held on August 21 in two shifts, the Grade-III examinations were held on Sunday. The tests for more posts under Grade III are scheduled for September 11.

All examinations are being conducted by the Board of Secondary Education, Assam (SEBA).

“Last week, internet services were suspended in 26 districts. This time Barpeta has been added to the list,” a senior official of the Home and Political Department told PTI.

According to a state government order, mobile internet services were stopped from 10 am to 12 noon and from 2 pm to 4 pm, he said.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a programme here, Sarma said, We have decided to return the examination fees collected from candidates who fail to clear it. The money will be deposited in the bank accounts from which the payment was made.

He also said efforts will be made to declare the results of this recruitment drive within a month.

On August 17, Sarma had said that internet services would be suspended during the examination hours to avoid possible malpractices during the recruitment process.

Assam Police said Section 144 of CrPC has been promulgated in and around the examination venues for all three days in order to hold the examination in a “free, fair and transparent manner”.

Prohibitory orders have also been imposed within a radius of 100 metres of the SEBA office in Guwahati till the receiving, depositing and scrutinising process of the answer scripts is complete.

The chief minister had on Saturday evening chaired a meeting of senior officials via video conferencing to take stock of the preparation, and asked them to ensure that nobody resorted to unfair means during the examination.

Also Read: West Bengal: Class X exams begin, internet suspended in 7 districts

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