With just seven hours left for the exam, they crosschecked all the strong rooms in the state to verify if the images making the rounds on social media matched with the actual question paper. They didn’t match and what was circulated on social media was proven to be fake.
“The circulated images were not of the actual question paper, but something fabricated by miscreants. The department has filed a complaint with CCB,” said PU director PC Jaffer. The matter was revealed to the media only after the exam began to make sure that the students were not stressed by the alleged paper leak.
“The logic used in the bar code on the allegedly leaked question paper images didn’t match with what has been used by the board. The PU department follows a logic in the formation of the bar code. Also, the serial numbers printed on the images were of 022 series, while the original question paper had different serial numbers. On verification, CCTV footage from all the treasury strong rooms showed that the question paper bundles stored there were not disturbed by anybody,” explained Jaffer.
However, many students across the state had accessed images of the question paper circulated on WhatsApp on Friday night. “We had no clue about the verification done by the PU board early in the morning. The fake question paper had already created stress and confusion among many students who had genuinely prepared for the exam,” a lecturer told TOI, on condition of anonymity.
Of the total 4,85,988 students who had registered for the exam, 21,966 were absent.