Evans Tries an O-Level
Important Long/ Detailed Answer Type Questions- to be answered in about 100 -150 words each Value-based questions-
Ql. Give an account of the blunders committed by the prison authorities which helped Evans in escaping from the prison.
Ans. Prison authorities made many blunders. It was only because of these mistakes that Evans could escape from prison. The hatching of the escape plan started with the German tutor’s entry. The German teacher who had been coming to take Evans’ classes was Evan’s accomplice. Everyone assumed that he was a teacher from the technical college. The invigilator’s identity was also not verified.
On the Examination day, Jackson’s not getting Evans’ ‘bobble-hat’ removed was a blunder. If Stephens had not been shifted out from the cell, the escape would not have been possible. Jackson should have searched McLeery thoroughly and seen the rubber ring closely.
The prison staff blindly believed that the injured man was the invigilator, though it was Evans playing a trick on them. When Evans was arrested, the Governor was complacent and sent him in a prison van, leaving Evans in the hands of his own accomplices. He, thus, lost Evans who made his final escape.
Q2. Attempt a brief character sketch of ‘Evans the Break’.
Ans. Evans comes across to us as a highly clever, manipulative and shrewd individual. A non-violent kleptomaniac by birth, he was a jail-bird having being put in prison several times and escaping as many as three times. He was an amusing chap, good at imitations and a star at the Christmas concert. He had an unkempt physical appearance but a cheerful smile which he used for the prison officers.
A cunning and resourceful person, Evans is able to use his presence of mind time and again, to his utmost advantage. He makes a request to Mr Jackson to allow him to put on his bobble hat but complains to the invigilator against Stephens whose presence disturbs his concentration. He is polite when he makes special requests to suit his convenience or rather when he plans to put his plan into action. He is quick to disguise himself as parson McLeery and spill blood on himself to appear injured. He is a clever manipulator and uses this quality to win the confidence of the police officers.
Evans enjoys the faith, support and active cooperation of his team of dedicated comrades. They are meticulous in their planning and work out the minutest details in order to carry out their plans without any mishaps. Even in the worst circumstances, Evans does not lose his cool. He has the last laugh when he is able to fool the police officers and the Governor and escapes for the fourth time.
3. What purpose did the question paper and the correction slip serve? How did they help both the criminal and the Governor?
Ans. The correction slip served two purposes in the escape of Evans. Firstly, it confirmed the name of the hotel where Evans had to stay after his escape and, secondly, it confirmed the time when the paper started.
The slip also helped the Governor to find out the exact location of Evans. As the Governor could understand German, so after reading it, he realised that Evans was in Newbury. So he cracked the code through Index no. 313 and the centre no. 271 written on the paper. This gave the Governor the information that 313/271 was the pin code for the middle of Chipping Norton where he reached to arrest Evans at Golden Lion hotel.
4. How was Evans able to devise a foolproof plan for his escape from prison as well as procure items for his disguise in spite of severe instruction and strict observation?
Ans. As part of his plan to escape the prison, Evans expressed his desire to learn German and passing O-level examination. The prison authority after consulting the board, allowed a tutor to come into the cell and give him tuitions in German. In fact, the tutor was part of his team arranging his escape. Evans was to appear for examinations. The test would be given in the prison cell and a priest was arranged as an invigilator. At the end of the test, Evans impersonated as the invigilator McLeery and remained inside the cell, pretending to be injured while the other escaped. In fact, it was the invigilator who had come wearing two coats, two collars, two pairs of spectacles and two false beards and the pig blood in a rubber tube. As a result, in spite of strict vigil by the prison authorities, he was able to escape from the prison.
5. What could the Governor have done to securely bring back Evans to the prison, when he caught him at the ‘Golden Lion’? What does this final act of the Governor prove?
Ans. The Governor was intelligent and had good analytical power. He very cleverly located the Golden Lion hotel and deciphered Chipping Norton on the map of Oxfordshire. He reached there and caught Evans. Evans was handcuffed and sent back to the prison in the prison van. But here the Governor again did the same mistake as he did earlier of relying on his staff. He never bothered to cross-check the identity of prison officers. So Evans was taken away by his own friends disguised as the prison officers. And once again Evans escaped leaving the Governor shocked and surprised.
6. Give a character sketch of the Governor of Oxford Prison based on your understanding of the story `Evan Tries An O-level’.
Ans. The Governor of H.M. Prison is a very intelligent and vigilant person but at times he overestimates himself. He is extra cautious in Evans’ case but is too much dependent on his staff and makes hasty conclusions. He is full of ideas and many a time his hunches prove true but he never investigates them. Though he is always conscious of Evans’ cleverness yet he fails to understand Evans’ psyche.
His conjectures brought the successful implementation of Evans plans. He does not cross-examine the identity of the wounded man and is led on. However, he is intelligent and analytical. He is able to. put two and two together and locate the Golden Lion hotel and reach Evans. But like always, in his zeal to look efficient, he does not check the identity of the prison officers. This results in the final escape of Evans.
7. How did the negligence of the prison officers prove to be a boon for Evans?
Ans. The prison officers prove to be a pack of “good-for-a-giggle’ officers who were no match to the clever Evans. First, negligence on their part was not to verify the identity of the German teacher. They could not even identify McLeery, the imposter who came to the cell right under the nose of the prison authorities.
Jackson’s casual attitude towards the hat of Evans was another blunder. He showed his negligence in not even searching McLeery though, otherwise, his false beard and two collars and gowns could have been identified. Moreover, nobody tried to establish the identity of the wounded man and the Governor himself facilitated his escape by sending him out with Carter. Finally, the biggest negligence was not to verify the authenticity of prison officers with whom he sent Evans after he was captured. All this proved to be a boon for Evans to escape.
8.. What precautions were taken by the prison officers for the smooth conduct of examination?
Ans. Evans was called ‘Evans the Break’, so all possible precautions were taken by the prison officers for the smooth conduct of the examination. His razor, nail cutter and nail file were all taken away. His cell was bugged at the time of examination. The Governor himself was in direct touch with the prison house and the officers. After McLeery entered the cell for examination, Evans’ cell was locked. The Governor had a fear that Evans might overpower the invigilator. He instructed Jackson to have a physical check-up. There was tight security in the jail and everything was put on high alert. Thus, the prison officers took all possible precautions for the smooth conduct of the examination.
9. What role is played by McLeery, in contributing to the success of Evans’ escape plan?
Ans. McLeery plays the most significant role in Evans’ escape. He impersonates Reverend McLeery and reaches the prison. He has great acting skills and is so confident and intelligent that the jail authorities do not suspect him. It is his smartness to wear two beards, two collars and two gowns which help Evans to escape. Throughout, McLeery sits like a person, giving specific instructions like index no, the centre no, etc. He is smart enough to answer Jackson regarding the rubber tube.
It is not only once but even at the end, it is his friend who appeared as a driver of the prison van to steer Evans to freedom from H.M. Prison. Thus it was McLeery who was instrumental in the success of Evans’ escape plan.
10. ‘Evans the Break’ lived up to his Christian name. Discuss the steps undertaken by Evans to plan his escape.
Ans. ‘Evans the Break’ was a name given to Evans because of his jailbreaks. He had escaped thrice and fourth time also he lived up to his name despite all the precautions and security arrangements made by the prison authorities.
His escape plan started with the German tutor who was his friend. He decided to take the 0-level exam, as part of his plan. An imposter came as an invigilator and smuggled all necessary things required to befool the prison officers. So Evans dressed up as McLeery, splashed blood on his face and got away very easily.
Even when the Governor was able to catch him, he had another trick up his sleeves. The prison officer whom he was handed over was not the real officer. The van belonged to the prison authorities but the men had been replaced by his friends. So Evans was successful in escaping by befooling the officers.
11. What lapses on the pad of police and prison authorities helped Evans to escape from prison?
Ans. The prison officers prove to be a pack of “good-for-a-giggle’ officers who were no match to the clever Evans. First negligence on their part was not to verify the identity of the German teacher. They could not even identify McLeery, the imposter who came to the cell right under the nose of the prison authorities.
Jackson’s casual attitude towards the bobble hat of Evans was another blunder. He showed his negligence in not even searching McLeery thoroughly otherwise his false beard and two collars and gowns could have been identified. Moreover, nobody tried to establish the identity of the wounded man and the governor himself facilitated his escape by sending him out with Carter. Finally, the biggest negligence was not to verify the authenticity of prison officers with whom he sent Evans after he was captured. All this proved to be a boon for Evans to escape.
12. Who was supposed to invigilate the exam? What did he carry with him to fulfil his duty to satisfaction?
Ans. Reverend McLeery, a person from St. Mary’s Church was supposed to invigilate the exam. The person carried a small brown suitcase which contained a sealed question paper, a yellow invigilator form, a special ID card, a paper knife, the Bible and a newspaper. All the paraphernalia that was required for the escape of Evans was also brought by McLeery. In fact, he was not the person but Evans’ friend who wore two collars, two gowns and two beards to execute Evans’ escape plan. He also brought a rubber tube which had pig’s blood mixed with human blood to prevent it from clotting.
Thus, McLeery had brought everything for the satisfactory fulfilment of his duty as an invigilator as well as to help Evans escape.