Sunday, August 06, 2017

JKPSC denies info to visually-challenged applicant under RTI : By Moosa Hayat

Kasmir Monitor: Srinagar: Sunday, August 06, 2017.
For over a month now, a visually challenged youth has not been provided information by the J&K Public Service Commission (JKPSC) under the Right to Information.
Partially-blind, Umar Rashid Bhandari appeared in the 10+2 lectureship examination conducted by the JKPSC in December.
As per Umar, he is a postgraduate in Education and has qualified NET and JRF as well as SET.
“My score i(in the lectureship examination) is very low, not what I expected,” Umar told The Kashmir Monitor.
Umar subsequently filed an application under RTI, seeking information about the answer key, a copy of his optical mark reading (OMR) sheet, and a copy of the candidate allegedly selected at his place.
On July 3, Umar got a letter from the JKPSC stating, “You are informed that the commission is not providing the answer key/OMR sheets. However, you can inspect your answer sheet on 21-07-2017 at 11 am at J&K public service commission, Solina, Srinagar”.
He said: “I made it to their office in a curfew on July 21, but they said, ‘Why did you come in this situation?’ I was told to visit them again on 26th of the same month,” Umar said. “I visited the office again on July 26.”
“The Secretary there directed an employee to give me all the desired information that I seek. But after waiting for almost an hour, nothing happened. Then I approached the employee and reminded him. He went into the officer’s chamber and then everything changed,” Umar said.
He said the Secretary then changed her statement, saying that they could not provide information to candidates as per their rules.
“They told me they can let me have a look at my OMR sheet,” he added.
Umar said he wasn’t shown the evaluated sheet.
“They refused to show me the incorrect responses on my OMR sheet and also refused to show me the answer key and the OMR sheet of the guy I had mentioned in my RTI application,” he said.
Umar claimed that a day before he visited the JKPSC office, a zoology candidate was shown all the information.
Under Secretary (PIO) at the JKPSC, Ishtiaq Ahmad said the candidates could check their sheets only after completion of the selection process.
“The OMR sheets were in the custody of an official who was out of the station on that day. However, he can come to the office on the next working day and we will address all his grievances,” Ishtiaq said.