Students' calls to postpone JEE, NEET and other exams intensify

new delhi: As over 4,000 students nationwide went on a hunger strike for a day, demanding that examinations like the Joint Entrance Examinations and the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test be postponed considering the danger to students amid the pandemic; students in Delhi intensified their protests against the administration for insisting that the exams be held.

The students had even approached the Supreme Court, but it had refused to interfere in the exam schedule. The National Testing Agency (NTA), which is conducting these exams, has refused to defer them further saying it will affect next year's academic calendar.

Mohammed Amer is a graduate student whose brother will be sitting for NEET. "This is not the correct time to conduct the examinations, as it may expose students to the virus. Many will have to travel as well," he said, adding that they are just asking for an extension in time.

Meanwhile, examinations like the Delhi University entrance test have also been notified by the NTA with many saying it would be unreasonable to expect students to travel and appear in these exams considering the COVID-19 situation.

To appear in the Delhi University entrance examinations Shyam (name changed) would have to travel eight hours by train to reach a test centre in Kerala's Trivandrum. Delhi University entrance exams are expected to start from September 6, with more than 7 lakh students hoping to sit for undergraduate (UG), postgraduate (PG) and Mphil/Phd level courses at the varsity here.

Shyam, a resident of Malappuram said, "There is only one centre in Kerala, which is in Trivandrum and more than that the place is at the moment leading with maximum COVID-19 cases. That is my major concern as I will have to obviously travel a day before the exam and have to stay somewhere. I can't even eat food as it would be unsafe," he said, speaking to Millennium Post over the phone.

The entrance exams will be held in three slots for different subjects. Various BA, BBA, MA, Ph.D., M.Phil, M.Com courses have been divided into these slots across the six days.

Shyam said that there is no other option but to conduct the examinations, however, "I feel extending it to one more month would have been better. Right now, I have no other choice but to travel."

The All India Students Association (AISA), claimed that over 4,200 students observed a day-long hunger strike at their respective homes demanding that CBSE compartment exams of Classes 10 and 12 be cancelled and entrance exams such as the UGC-NET, CLAT, NEET and JEE be postponed as well. While the JEE is scheduled to be held from September 1 to 6, the NEET will be held on September 13.

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