GUWAHATI: In a recent development in Assam's Bongaigaon district, the Inspector of Schools, Jyotsna Rani Barman, has been suspended due to allegations of negligence of duty and unauthorized absence from headquarters. The Department of School Education took this action following a report from the Director of Secondary Education, highlighting Barman's unauthorized absence during a crucial examination period.
The report revealed that Barman, appointed as the District Examination Controller cum Supervising Officer and Zonal Incharge for several districts, was absent from the headquarters without proper authorization. The incident coincided with the Talent Search Examination, 2023, conducted by the State Academic Council for class-VIII, IX, and X on December 31, 2023. Barman's responsibilities included overseeing the examination process in Goalpara, Bongaigaon, Dhubri, South Salmara, Kokrajhar, and Chirang districts.
It was reported that confidential examination materials were dispatched to all assigned zones on December 27, 2023. However, Barman was conspicuously absent at the headquarters to receive these materials. Notably, she neither applied for leave nor informed the Director about her absence. Furthermore, Barman failed to hand over the charge of her office to an authorized person, compounding the gravity of her unauthorized absence.
The official notice from the Department of School Education cited these lapses as grounds for Barman's suspension, emphasizing her negligence of duty and unauthorized travel without the approval of competent authority. This incident is not the first stain on Barman's record, as she had faced bribery charges in 2020 while serving in Nalbari district. During that episode, she was apprehended by the anti-corruption bureau for accepting a bribe amounting to Rs. 15,000.
The suspension underscores the importance of accountability and adherence to protocol in the education system. The unauthorized absence of a key official during a critical examination period raises concerns about the integrity and smooth conduct of such examinations. The Department of School Education's decisive action sends a clear message about the consequences of negligence and violation of established procedures.