A proposal for a new legislation, the Public Examination (Prevention of Unfair Means) Bill, 2024, aimed at addressing paper leaks in major exams, is scheduled to be presented in the Parliament on February 5. According to Hindustan Times, the bill suggests imposing a minimum imprisonment term of three to five years for cases of paper leaks and a range of five to 10 years for organized crimes related to such leaks. Additionally, the bill recommends a fine of up to Rs 1 crore for organized crimes.
Union Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances, and Pensions, Jitendra Singh, will seek approval for the introduction of the bill. The primary objective of the legislation is to combat cheating and enhance transparency in various public examinations, including UPSC, SSC, RRC, NEET, JEE, CUET, etc. The bill has identified approximately 20 offenses and unfair practices, including impersonation, manipulation of answer sheets, and tampering with documents during the candidate selection process.
The proposed bill also outlines penalties for service provider firms, suggesting a fine of up to Rs 1 crore. Additionally, it suggests recovering the proportionate cost of an exam and imposing a four-year ban on the firm from conducting any public exams as part of the punitive measures.