KARACHI: The Chairperson of the matric board suspected the role of the Central Control Officer (CCOs) in the controversy surrounding the paper leak and the delay in the delivery of the question paper. The Chairperson of the Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK) Syed Sharaf Ali Shah said it was the primary responsibility of CCOs to distribute the papers to the exam centres. The controversy started when the question paper of the first exam was released on social media, minutes after the exam began at 9:30 in the morning. “The CCOs did not arrive (at the hub) to collect exam papers,” said the matric board chairperson. “The delay was caused when the board’s staff, due to the CCOs absence, delivered the papers to the examination centres,” he added. Shah made it clear that if the CCOs were involved in this, they will no longer be performing this duty. “The CCOs orders have been cancelled. Now, the superintendents will collect papers from the hubs and deliver them to the exam centres,” he added. The board has increased the number of hubs from 11 to 18 to ensure the timely delivery of papers. “The paper was leaked due to administrative irregularities,” he said. “We will create a mechanism to prevent papers from leaking in the future,” added the matric board chairperson. Further talking about the cheating practice, he said that ‘copy culture’ has reduced significantly. “This time, the presence of the same teachers and the police at the examination centres has allowed the copy culture,” he added. According to sources, the question paper was also available outside the exam centre after four minutes. The paper began late at several examination centres in Karachi, according to reports, and students and their parents expressed dissatisfaction with the situation. In response to the reports, the board stated that students will be given the allotted two hours to complete their paper if the exam began late. According to Shah, the matric board chairperson, 348,249 students have registered for the ninth grade and matric exams in the science and general groups. 185 of the 438 examination centres are in government schools, while 253 are in private schools. There are 201 centres for girls and 237 for boys.