Blind student fails in exam, alleges lapse by JNU admin
New Delhi: A blind student of the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) refused to accept his exam result in which he was declared failed, accusing the administration of not providing him a writer and reading material in braille script. Munesh Kumar, who has done his Masters from the same university and where all exams were written for him by a scribe, has accused the Centre of Japanese Studies (CJS) of denying him a writer despite his request, which resulted in his failing his exam.
"I was not provided the reading material in braille at the centre, nor the Job Access With Speech (JAWS) software. When I asked them for these, they directed me to the Helen Keller Library in the university. They did not provide me the writer also. The writer who accompanied me to the exam hall refused to write paper for me. He only read the questions aloud," the BA first semester student at CJS said.
Kumar said that all his exams, even during his schooling and graduation from Delhi University's Rajdhani College, were written for him by writers because he can see "very little". His failing the exam not only renders him ineligible for promotion to the next semester but has led to cancellation of his studentship from the centre for falling below a certain CGPA.
Kumar also complained that he was not given a steady tutor. "He (tutor) would come once a week only on Sundays and then too would always be in hurry," he said.
The Chairperson of his centre, Professor PA George, however, alleged it was truancy committed by Kumar that did him in and not all the claims he made were true.
"The tutor would visit him every day but he would not find him (Kumar) in his room. In the middle of the semester, he went to Agra... Learning a language is like maths, if you miss even one class, it is very hard for one to develop language," Professor George said.
He conceded that the centre does not have Japanese reading material in braille, because the centre is "newly built" and because it requires a "lot of money" translating all books in braille.
On the charge that the writer refused to write his papers, Professor George insisted that the claim was not true and that it was Kumar who insisted on being given another writer. He said the student could still write to the university to consider his "special case".