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KARACHI: IBA regrets ‘mistake’ in entry test

November 11, 2001

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KARACHI, Nov 10: The Institute of Business Administration has vowed to conduct medical college entrance test and other tests in a more transparent manner in future.

Speaking at a press conference at the IBA City Campus on Saturday, the director of the institute, Javed Ashraf, said that it had been decided that old papers would not be repeated at any cost in future.

“We have got new paper-setters and tests would be prepared independently,” he said and regretted the blunder committed by the IBA in October 28 test for admission to government-run medical education institutions in the province.

The senior faculty member, Prof Inayat N Din, assisted the director during the press conference.

A large number of students and their parents had suspected leakage of the questions of the test beforehand, while the health department after ascertaining the facts finally revoked the test as, according to it, the test was not held transparently and some irregularities were found in the conduct of the test.

Mr Javed expressed the view that occurrence of mistakes in the IBA tests was not a new happening, but this time things were blown out of proportion.

“When a developed country like America has not been able to avoid errors even in the launch of satellites then how can we expect a complete elimination of mistakes in our workings?” he said and added that the IBA had gone as far as humanly possible to conduct the test fairly.

He said that the chief of the IBA testing body, Abdul Hameed Khan, was a man of high character and integrity and he (Javed) held him in high esteem.

I would not say that he was involved in any malpractice, but by mistake he repeated the test paper of 1999, almost in the whole, forgetting the fact that the paper was stolen from test centres in the past.

He informed the journalists that Mr Hameed, who had voluntarily tendered his resignation as the head of the IBA testing wing, would continue in his present capacity till the time any substitute was not found for him.

He said that the IBA was already in the process of selecting a suitable person for the testing job.

To a question he said he was fully satisfied with the IBA staff as far as their honesty in examination affairs was concerned and as such there were no reasons to lose faith in them on the issue of paper leakage.

He said that tests were repeated everywhere, but this time the ‘trouble-makers’ were all out against the IBA and him.

“I am of the firm belief that there was no leakage of paper at any stage and what happened was just a human error,” he said and added that he was trying to live up to confidence of his clients and students as well.

To a question, he said that the Sindh government was fully satisfied with the IBA stance with regard to the paper leakage and as such he did not think it necessary to demand any inquiry into the whole episode of the test paper leakage by any external agency.

“By conducting tests we are doing a national service, but if any of the agencies, including the health department, decides to do away with the IBA then we would not mind,” the IBA director maintained.

He said if people or any agency came out with any evidence of the alleged leakage of paper then he would fully pursue that at every level in the government.

He also stressed the need to make concerted efforts with the support of community and the media to overcoming the ‘mafia’ and the trouble makers having vested interests.

It may be recalled that the re-test for admission to the first year MBBS/BDS programme of the government-run medical colleges in the province of Sindh would be held on November 15.

The entry test for the Karachi Medical and Dental College would be conducted by the IBA on November 11 and for IBA’s own admissions on November 18.