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NEET, JEE Exams LIVE Updates : Above 17 Lakh Admit Cards Downloaded Indicate Students Want Exams to Be Held at Any Cost, States Education Minister

 

NEET, JEE Exams LIVE Updates : Above 17 Lakh Admit Cards Downloaded Indicate Students Want Exams to Be Held at Any Cost, States Education Minister


A file photo of education minister Ramesh Pokhriyal.

Further delay in conducting medical and engineering entrance exams NEET and JEE will lead to a 'zero academic year' and any quick alternative to the crucial exams will dilute the quality of education and have cascading effects, according to Directors of several Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs)

 

As opposition parties join countrywide protests by students, the minister slammed the “politicization of education” and asked all to abide by the orders of the Supreme Court. In an interview, “Nishank” said a zero academic year will cause tremendous loss to the students and he had received several mails from candidates and their parents asking for the exams to be held as per the schedule. He added that there was no certainty about when the pandemic would end and hence, “the solution therefore is to move on with precautions”.


A day after opposition parties slammed the Centre’s decision to hold NEET and JEE amid the coronavirus pandemic, a call that has seen students across the country up in arms, the Congress has decided to hold nationwide protests against the government’s move in solidarity with the applicants who have expressed worry about lack of transportation and inevitable crowding if the exams are not postponed. The political move comes after a meeting chaired by Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi, which saw chief ministers of Maharashtra, West Bengal and Punjab among others in attendance, urged states to approach the Supreme Court against conducting exams during a pandemic.


Supporting the demand for postponement of NEET and JEE examinations in view of the coronavirus pandemic, seven chief ministers of non-BJP ruled states on Wednesday decided to jointly move the Supreme Court on the issue. Parties like the DMK and AAP also joined the growing chorus against the holding of the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) at a time when COVID-19 cases were rising across the country. Batting for the students who are demanding postponement of the exams due to COVID-19, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi urged the central government to listen to their grievances and find an amicable solution. "NEET-JEE aspirants are worried about their health and future. They have genuine concerns of: fear of COVID-19 infection, transport and lodging during pandemic and flood-mayhem in Assam and Bihar," he said on Twitter. "GOI must listen to all stakeholders and find an acceptable solution," he said.


Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia separately said medical and engineering entrance exams NEET and JEE should be postponed and the central government should work on alternative methods for selecting students. "They (Centre) are saying protocols will be followed. Following the same protocols that the Centre wants 28 lakh students to follow, lakhs of Indians have tested positive," the Aam Aadmi Party told reporters. "How can we take the risk of sending 28 lakh students to exam centres and be assured that they will not be infected," Sisodia asked.


The Joint Entrance Examination (Main) and the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET-UG) will be conducted in September as scheduled, the Ministry of Education officials had said on Tuesday. The Supreme Court had last week dismissed a plea seeking postponement of the two exams, saying a "precious" academic year of students "cannot be wasted" and life has to go on. While a total of 9.53 lakh candidates have registered for JEE-Mains, 15.97 lakh students have registered for NEET. The NEET is to be held on September 13 and engineering entrance exam JEE Main is scheduled from September 1-6.


While one section is protesting against the exams, over 100 academicians have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi supporting the government’s decision, "Youths and students are the future of the nation but in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, clouds of uncertainty have gathered over their careers too. There are lot of apprehensions about admission and classes which need to be resolved at the earliest," they said in their letter. Like every year, this year too millions of students have passed their Class 12 exams and are now waiting at home to eagerly take the next step, the letter said. "The government has announced the dates for JEE-Mains and NEET any further delay in conducting the exams will result in waste of precious year for students. The dreams and future of our youth and students cannot be compromised at any cost. However, some are trying to play with the future of our students simply to propel their own political agenda and oppose the government," it said.


The signatories include academicians from the Delhi University, IGNOU, Lucknow University, JNU, BHU, IIT Delhi and Indian academicians from foreign universities such as University of London, University of California, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Ben Gurion University, Israel, among others. "We strongly believe that the central government will successfully conduct the JEE and NEET exams taking full precautions to ensure that the future of students is taken care of and the academic calendar for 2020-21 is rolled out," it added.

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