Inept distribution of application forms for the state eligibility test (STET) being conducted by Haryana Board of School Education (HBSE) has caused harassment to thousands of candidates.
Even as HBSE is claiming to have printed an adequate number of application forms, there has been a heavy rush at the sales counters set up by the board. The forms are said to have been sold out within a couple of hours of start of their sale in the morning.
Many bookstall owners are making a fast buck by indulging in blackmarketing of forms. Students alleged though a form is priced at Rs 600, bookstall owners sell it at an exorbitant rate- Rs 750.
According to reports from Rohtak, Jind, Rewari, Gurgaon, Sonipat and Panipat, there has been shortage of forms at the centres as a large number of people have had to return empty-handed even after standing in the queue for hours together.
A chaos was witnessed at the HBSE centre located in the old housing board locality in Rohtak on Friday as nearly 1,000 people were making a beeline to get the forms. Hundreds had to return empty-handed after the distributor announced around 11 am that the entire stock of for the general category had been sold out.
A BEd passout Anju, who was disappointed at not being able to procure a form, alleged, "It's sheer mismanagement on the part of the board authorities. They have set up only one sales counter for the entire district. A heavy rush and chaos is expected as people from across the district are supposed to arrive at the centre. Moreover, we have been informed that the board sends the stock of forms to the centre on a daily basis, which only worsens the problem."
She lamented, "I came from Sampla town, located 40 km from Rohtak, to purchase the form. I would prefer to get one form from the bookseller today to avoid a similar ordeal tomorrow. Had the board got the process of applying for the test online, students would have been saved from unnecessary inconvenience."
Many students who had come from Jind alleged that the authorized centres were resorting to black-marketing of application forms. "I suspect that the same form would be available for double or even triple of the fixed price as the last date approaches. Since I could not get the form over the last two days in Jind, I came to Rohtak in the hope of getting one," said Rakesh Sharma, a JBT passout from Julana town of Jind district.
Secretary of HBSE Shekhar Vidyarthi, when contacted by TOI, maintained that they had got a sufficient number of forms printed. "We are supplying the required number of forms to the centre. The forms are also available at designated bookstalls and if anyone is selling them at a price more than the printed one, the buyer could report the matter to us," he stated.