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In Punjab, Class 5 question paper tests students about govt’s welfare schemes

A practice Punjabi question paper, which teachers have been directed to distribute to students to prepare them for the National Achievement Survey (NAS), was sent to them on WhatsApp groups of the Education Department on Sunday.

Government primary school teachers in Punjab have been sent question papers for Class 5 students, which carry a huge state government advertisement on hiking social security pension, below which are questions related to the advertisement.

A practice Punjabi question paper, which teachers have been directed to distribute to students to prepare them for the National Achievement Survey (NAS), was sent to them on WhatsApp groups of the Education Department on Sunday.

Manmeet Grewal, assistant project coordinator, Padho Punjab, Ludhiana district, said NAS practice papers have been received from the state head office in Mohali and the same question paper has been sent to all teachers across the state. “These question papers are prepared at head office in Mohali, not at district level. We sent them to teachers as received,” he said.

In the question paper, question no. 2 has an advertisement as a reference picture which says that the Punjab government has doubled the social security pension for old age, widows and destitute women, orphan children and disabled. This is followed by a multiple choice questions: “The above advertisement is regarding what?” and “When was the hiked social security pension distribution started?”

Teachers said they have been directed to take printouts of this question paper to give to students on Monday, when Classes 3 to 5 will sit for their September mid-term exams. “To prepare children for National Achievement Survey which is in November, these NAS practice papers of 40 marks each will be distributed for mid-terms,” said a teacher.

A senior teacher from the Democratic Teachers Front (DTF) said: “Elections are here and now Punjab government is publicising its schemes via question papers… Question papers of schoolchildren are not meant for poll campaigning… The advertisement is just a publicity measure.”

Assembly elections in Punjab are slated to be held next year.

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