'Coaching Institutes Betrayed Us': Candidates Call UPSC Civil Service Prelims 2023 Answer Key Arbitrary

'Coaching Institutes Betrayed Us': Candidates Call UPSC Civil Service Prelims 2023 Answer Key Arbitrary

Candidates have taken to X to raise their disputes regarding they answer key, with some calling it "disputed" and some alleging that the answers provided are not entirely accurate and have created confusion among candidates.

Siksha MUpdated: Saturday, May 11, 2024, 10:09 AM IST
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Candidates Call UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2023 Answer Key Arbitrary, Feel Misled By Study Books | Pixabay

The Union Public Service Commission on Thursday, May 9, released the UPSC Civil Service answer key.

Candidates have taken to X to raise their disputes regarding the answer key, with some calling it "disputed" and some alleging that the answers provided are not entirely accurate and have created confusion among candidates.

Many users on X find the answer key arbitrary

A question in the prelims 2023 answer key asks candidates to consider the following fauna:

1)Lion-tailed Macaque

2)Malabar Civet

3)Sambar Deer

It then goes on to ask candidates how many of the above are "generally nocturnal or most active after sunset".

A UPSC Candidate on X has expressed that from the options provided, Sambar Deer is considered to be nocturnal as per many textual sources. The X user says that if that is the case, the UPSC answer key may as well be "wrong", as it does not deem Sambar Deer to be nocturnal.

Another X user adds that based upon common observation, Sambar Deer is seen during the day as well, finding the answer key arbitrary.

Candidates in dilemma about the right answer, feel betrayed by coaching institutes

In a question in the answer key titled: "In essence, what does 'Due Process of Law' mean?", some candidates are in a dilemma as they see both option a) The principal of natural justice and option c) Fair application of law to be correct. In a state of confusion, a candidate had selected option A, despite all coaching centres claiming that option C is the correct answer. "I am happy that I was absolutely correct", he says on X.

Users are seen to agree that people claiming to be UPSC exam experts on social media are not to be trusted, as some of them may offer you the wrong answers.

Candidates express that both option A and option C sound more or less the same, and in the end, it may just be a matter of luck as to which option the UPSC deems right.

A user on X says that Prelims are only based on luck, while another asks: "Missed passing my prelims by 0.67 marks. Can I say that this question cost me my attempt?"

Another X user chimes in and says that the question asks for your opinion, whereas questions in the exam should ask for facts.

Study books may be misleading

An X user clarifies that the correct answer should be option A - The principal of natural justice. However, if students go by Laxmikant's, Indian Polity First, a book used popularly by UPSC candidates in their exam preparations, then they might be led to think that option C - Fair application of law may be the correct one, as the word "fair" is mentioned in the explanation for due processes for law.

Another user says, "Fairness is just a synonym for natural justice". He adds that judicial precedent around the world has been that natural justice is just duty to act fairly and calls Option C equally correct.

A matter of interpretation

An X user in the comments thread expresses a contrarian opinion, and says that the question above is one of the most beautiful and creative questions UPSC could have ever asked, as law is primarily a matter of interpretation. With pride, he states that he knew since the beginning that A is the right answer and ignored instructions of coaching classes.

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