CHENNAI: It’s going to be tougher to cheat at the JEE (Mains) this year, as jammers will be used to keep candidates from using the Internet. One jammer will be installed for every 24 students at the entrance exam for the country’s engineering institutions, to be held between January 8 and 12.
To be held as a computer-based test across 258 cities, the exam will be taken by 9.65 lakh candidates. As many as 40,000 jammers will be used, Union Human Resources Development Minister Prakash Javadekar said on Tuesday. “This is to make sure no examinee indulges in any malpractice,” he added. “Installation of jammers on such a massive scale will ensure there is no possibility of students using any devices that facilitate cheating in any form.” This will be the first time such devices are being used for the exam for admission to IIITs, NITs and other Centrally-funded technical institutions.
Another first would be the exam being conducted by the National Testing Agency, a specialised body to conduct various entrance exams, which was formed a few months ago. Till now, it was conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education.
“Using jammers — to ensure students can’t access the Internet via smartphones, tablets or transmitters, or can’t connect to anyone else — is done in many developed countries. We are now adopting it for important entrance exams,” a senior NTA official told this newspaper.
In previous years, there have been instances of candidates trying to use technology such as transmitters and bluetooth devices to cheat in exams.
Sources in the HRD ministry’s Higher Education Department conceded that reports of question-paper leaks in the Class X and XII CBSE exams last year cast doubts about the credibility of Central-level exams and prompted the government to use technology to prevent such malpractices.