On Sunday, PTI reported that over 4,000 students observed a day-long hunger strike to raise their demands of postponing UGC-NET, CLAT, NEET and JEE exams and for cancellation of CBSE compartment exams of Classes 10 and 12.
Background to the hunger strike
“SATYAGRAHagainstExamInCovid,” hashtag was used on Twitter to highlight their grievances, including inaccessibility to their allotted test centres, risk of transmission not only among students but also to their parents, etc by the students.
After the Central Government announced that it has no intention to postpone NEET 2020 and JEE (Main), the act followed.
The Supreme Court, stating that postponement of the exams will put the “career of the students in peril”, refused to interfere in the matter.
Dates for the NEET and JEE Exams
NEET-2020 examination is scheduled to be held on September 13 and JEE (Main) Examination is scheduled from September 1, 2020 to September 6, 2020.
Given the spike in Covid cases, several students demand this academic year be declared as the “zero year” and that entrance examinations be postponed.
Political leaders support and seek help from central government
Subramanian Swamy, Former Union Cabinet Minister took to Twitter to express his views against conducting of entrance examinations amid the pandemic and expressed,
“There are a huge number of students or their family who have been infected with Covid 19 and have lost precious time to prepare and be ready, in addition to the inability to attend the exams due to quarantine rules.”
Rahul Gandhi, Congress leader tweeted that “GOI must listen to the #StudentsKeMannKiBaat about NEET, JEE exams and arrive at an acceptable solution.”
Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Congress Party Leader in Lok Sabha also wrote to the PM, seeking postponement of NEET, JEE and mentioned, “The aspirants of national examination are under tremendous mental pressure as to how they could remain immune to the infection while attending the examination physically. Right at this pandemic situation their concerns should be given due consideration.”
Manish Sisodia, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister also made an appeal to cancel the entrance exams in view of the COVID-19 situation and make an alternative arrangement for admission this year to Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, Education Minister.
Supreme Court’s Stand on Postponement of NEET and other Exams
The issue of creating overseas test centres is also pending for the NEET examination consideration before the Apex Court, and will be listed today for hearing.
Last week, a plea seeking a direction upon the CBSE to not force the students of class 10th and 12th in the compartment category, to appear in the compartment examination was dismissed by the Supreme Court.
Over issues pertaining to the recently declared exam date of UGC NET, Student representatives of some universities like Hyderabad Central University, Aligarh Muslim University and JNU, have written to the National Testing Agency.