Cheat sheets: Passing with numbers

Published: April 6, 2012
“We charge three rupees per micro copy,” said the owner of Zenith Photostat on Stadium Road.

“We charge three rupees per micro copy,” said the owner of Zenith Photostat on Stadium Road.


The students who avoid looking at books and past papers throughout the year or just feel the need for a little extra help, flock to the bookstore and photocopiers to make micro copies of subject wise cheat sheets, better-known as ‘pharra’.

“We charge three rupees per micro copy,” said the owner of Zenith Photostat on Stadium Road. “Most of the students come to store late at night just to do this.” He added that many store owners took advantage of students during exam season and charged exorbitant amounts per copy. These copies are very much in demand as students are not allowed to carry cell phones inside the examination centre, a cheat sheet can be easily hidden in a pocket or sock.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 6th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (9)

  • Ahsan
    Apr 6, 2012 - 1:38PM

    Cheating the future of this country…


  • Caution
    Apr 6, 2012 - 3:00PM

    It is our education system that needs reforms. No ‘pharra’ would be required or would help if the questions (preferrably MCQs) asked are logical and based on concept rather than memory.


  • Tahir Younus
    Apr 6, 2012 - 3:07PM

    Though cheating is a common phenomenon all over pakistan, but in Sind, both rural and urban it has become monstrous. Education department of Sind needs to tackle it efficiently and creatively, otherwise, the degrees obtained therefrom will be tainted with doubtful credentials. Peer Mazharul Haq shold look into the matter on urgent basis, if he could spare some time form political statements and “tablet enjoyment”


  • Apr 6, 2012 - 11:13PM

    These botties are useful in our examination systems because they are just test of memory.

    Denmark has started to allow everything even internet during exam. Teachers just have to change the format of paper. Instead of testing for memory, exam should test the ability of the student.

    Open book, open internet papers are more useful to prepare student of the current age rather than 18th century memory testing exams


  • Apr 6, 2012 - 11:37PM

    @ahsan: Until exams will remain memory tests, it is impossible to stop cheating.

    Second what is the purpose of memory testing. What is the purpose if the student learn everything by heart. Does that make him better than the other person who can use calculator or get the meaning of the word from internet. He can use and recall better with the help of artificial memory. These exams are actually useless. Its only purpose is to keep the public fool.

    Even with matric, fsc degrees alone, person is unable to do anything. Totally useless degrees and waste of time.


  • Apr 6, 2012 - 11:43PM

    The board should change the exam pattern. I bet the dull students won’t be able to cheat in an MCQs (multiple choice questions) exam paper.


  • Apr 7, 2012 - 1:18AM

    @AFGHAN Karachite: MCQs is not the solution. Solution is to stop the memory testing.


  • Apr 7, 2012 - 4:36AM

    everything is jaiz in war, love and exams.


  • Apr 7, 2012 - 10:04PM

    Ken Robinson believes the curriculum should be much more personalised. “Learning happens in the minds and souls, not in the databases of multiple-choice tests.”


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