Board staff strike: SSC exams may not be held on schedule

RAWALPINDI, Annual examination for secondary school certificate (SSC) may not be held according to schedule on March 13 because of strike of the employees of Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (BISE).

Even the initial scrutiny of the applications forms of the candidates could not be completed because of the strike over the withdrawal of admission fee from students of public institutions.

Workers of BISE Rawalpindi here on Monday blocked the 6th Road in front of their office and continued their protest against provincial government’s decision of the wavering the examination fees.

The workers fear that the decision will make the board financially vulnerable and have demanded the chief minister Punjab to take measures to rescue the examination bodies from going bankrupt as admission fees were not being received this year.

Talking to Dawn, BISE Employees Welfare Association general secretary Mehr Muhammad Akbar said the board usually started distributing roll number slips to the students two weeks before the starting the start of matriculation examination. He said the process was stalled because of the strike.

He said the government instead of resolving the issue was considering conducting the SSC examination by hiring university teachers and clerks from other departments if the strike continued.

Mr Akbar said government should redress grievances of the employees and that the examination conducted by the outsiders would not be successful as, he added, there were few days to prepare for the exercise.

He said about 124, 000 students had submitted examination forms with the board and it had to set up over 400 examination centers in four districts, besides arranging to convey question papers and answering sheets to the examination staff.

The representative of the board employees said they met Punjab Education Minister Mian Shujahur Rehman four days ago and the minister had assured them to arrange their meeting with the CM. But, no response has yet come from the minister.

Expressing solidarity with the staff of the BISE, representatives of Punjab Teachers Union announced that no school teacher would perform duties for upcoming SSC examinations across the province.