Pakistan News

Students protest MDCAT paper leak

Students protest MDCAT paper leak

LAHORE: A number of students staged a demonstration outside the Lahore Press Club on Wednesday to press the authorities to retake Medical and Dental College Admission Test (MDCAT) as its question paper was leaked.

Carrying placards, the protesters demanded that the condition to appear in MDCAT for admission to medical and dental colleges should be withdrawn as only students of private tuition centres performed well in it because they got the question paper in advance.

“The tuition academies charge Rs30,000 to Rs50,000 for MDCAT preparation sessions. Everyone cannot afford it,” said Rizwan Shaikh, a protester carrying a placard against the entrance test.Accompanied by her parents, a female protester alleged that this year some private academies managed to get a portion of MDCAT in advance.

“Even a single number matters in MDCAT and what if you get a whole portion in advance. The government should arrange MDCAT again because its results will now be doubtful,” she said.The father of another protester said the students with average marks in intermediate “who can pay” would score more marks in this year’s test due to paper leak and get admission to medical and dental colleges, depriving the talented lot of their right.

“This is also in violation of the merit policy of the government and will ultimately deteriorate medical education standards,” he said.

INQUIRY COMMITTEEE: Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has constituted a six-member committee to probe the alleged leakage of the question paper of the Medical and Dental College Admission Test.

The additional chief secretary will be the convener of the committee that will submit its report to the chief minister within 72 hours whether or not the MDCAT was conducted properly under full secrecy.

The additional inspector general of police (special branch), Prof Dr Eice Muhammad, the Federal Investigation Agency’s Lahore director, the Punjab Forensic Science Agency (PFSA) director general and a member of the Chief Minister’s Inspection Team (CMIT) will constitute the committee that will also “find out the persons responsible for such an offence, if committed, and to fix responsibility upon government servants to get the MDCAT conducted in the most professional manner,” said a letter issued by the CM Secretariat.

It may be recalled that four hours after the conclusion of MDCAT on Sunday, diagrams of the physics section of the paper along with a few retyped questions were posted on a Facebook account named ‘Ya mbbs ha mamu’, in an attempt to give an impression that the paper was leaked before the test.

The University of Health Sciences (UHS) welcomed constitution of a committee by the chief minister to probe the alleged leakage of the question paper of MDCAT 2017.

“The UHS is known for its valid, reliable and secure systems. The matter should be thoroughly investigated so that all those involved in it should be brought to justice,” said a spokesman.

A senior teacher of the Government College University (GCU) told Dawn the ‘difficulty level’ of MDCAT paper this time was a bit enhanced.

“My younger daughter appeared in the MDCAT. She did well because she didn’t attend any tuition centre. It was a bit difficult compared to the previous years with some changes in pattern. But all the multiple choice questions (MCQs) were taken from the prescribed syllabus,” said the teacher.

Published in Dawn, August 24th, 2017

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