Nearly three months after the SSC results were announced, a student came to know that he stood second in the city, after he received his set of corrected marksheets. The student, like hundreds of others, had sent in his answer sheets to be re-checked.

In June, 16-year-old Vyom Pawar, saw he had scored a staggering 96 per cent in his SSC boards; at 480 marks, Vyom was then 7 marks short of the city topper. Convinced that something was amiss, he chose to send his Marathi, History and Maths papers for re-evaluation, undeterred by advice from friends who warned that, in such cases, marks usually ended up being chopped off.

Vyom’s mother, Namrata Pawar (second from left), says she had to counsel her son (extreme right) after he was disappointed that his score of 96% was less than expected
Vyom’s mother, Namrata Pawar (second from left), says she had to counsel her son (extreme right) after he was disappointed that his score of 96% was less than expected

Earlier this week, Vyom finally received his reevaluated marksheets, telling him his score had been increased by 6 marks, just one short of the top slot. However, even with his new score of 97.2 per cent (486/500), he won’t be considered for the second rank in the city.

“We contacted the divisional board office in Vashi to find out if my son could have been a topper with his new score, but were informed that he was one mark short. Had his actual marks been released on the day of the result, things would have been different,” said Namrata Pawar, his mother.

The board stopped declaring rankers four years ago and since then, only declares subject toppers. “We also inquired if Vyom’s marks could be considered for subject toppers, but haven’t got any reply as yet,” she added.

While preparing for his exams, Vyom’s family says he had always aimed at coming first. “His teachers at St Francis School (in Borivli) were also surprised, so we sent his papers for reevaluation.

When we got hold of the photocopies of his answer sheets, his subject teachers pointed out that he should receive more marks and submitted their views,” said Namrata. There was a counting mistake in one of the papers, while a couple of answers were not corrected in another. His score in History and Maths were increased; Marathi remained unaltered.

“My son was disappointed that his work was not evaluated well, resulting in a score he hadn’t expected. I had to counsel him for some time,” said his mother, who is a doctor herself. This year, the state board received much flak from the students and parents community after a series of errors that marred the board examination session.

Officials bungled up in hall tickets that had printing errors, issued the same seat number to multiple students. Even marksheets had mistakes and some students also complained their theory or internals assessment marks were not included in the final score.

Meanwhile, Vyom is now studying Commerce at R R International College in Borivli. While he was unhappy with his score earlier, the reevaluated marks have now brought joy to the 16-year-old. “I informed my school about it and even my principal was very happy. We had a mini-celebration in school. I worked very hard for this and I’m glad it paid off,” said Vyom.

“Vyom was never pressured to do well in exams; he always worked hard. He was, therefore, a little disappointed when his score was not what he expected. Now that he has got his final marksheet, he is happy but the fervour of that moment is gone,” asserted his mother.