ACADEMIC OVER PANDEMIC
NEET and JEE have already postponed twice now, the Supreme Court decided that these exams have to be conducted despite increasing corona cases because the future of students is at stake. If exams are postponed again, the academic calendar will be affected. JEE is scheduled to be held from September 1 to 6 and NEET on the 13th of September.
People in favor of this decision believe that students are already in a burden and if the exams are to be postponed now, it will lead to loss of an academic year. It is also contended that nobody knows when this pandemic situation will be resolved, so students cannot wait for this to be over because their hard work and a huge amount of coaching fees are at stake.
Students and parents against the exams also have genuine reasons as there is a crisis in the country be it economic or natural, a lot of states are highly affected by floods right now, many families are suffering from an economic loss due to the lock-down. These families cannot afford to travel to exam centers. These poor children are completely ignored by the Court. And what about the students who are already infected with the corona virus, these students are in isolation, they cannot risk their and other’s life for the sake of an exam. So, are these students not eligible to take exams?
If no student is affected with the infection, even then also it is not practical to force lakhs of students to travel to the exam centers and write these hard and tiring exams amid this critical health and economic crisis. Transportation is also an important factor here, the agency claims that students are provided with the nearest centers, but this is not enough, the nearest is still not very near, in some areas public transportation is still not operating and the students from COVID containment areas cannot even step out of their houses, a student in flooded areas have lost their houses, the roads are blocked in flooded areas, transportation is not possible in this situation. And students who can afford private transportation have luxury but what about those students who cannot, are the students not eligible for exams?
These are the questions that have to be answered before any decision. Students are not against giving exams, this exam is the only thing they have worked for, but risking life for an exam is certainly a stupid idea. We all know that exams are important for these students, but authorities have to make sure that exams will not risk their lives. If it is not possible to postpone the exam, then the authority has to make sure that all the transportation, economic, health facilities are given to each student. Every guideline has to be followed, infected students' condition has to be examined and every measure of social distancing has to be followed.
Exams can only be conducted when safe SOPs are adopted, when safe transportation is available, when an effective vaccine is available, when exam centers are high in number and when the exponential growth of the COVID cases is in control.