Amid peak in COVID-19 cases, demands to cancel board exams on rise

Hyderabad: Amid an extensive rise in COVID-19 cases in the country owing to the second wave, demands are on the rise to cancel the scheduled board exams for classes 10 12, with even political parties and celebrities supporting.

More than one lakh students of both classes signed petitions asking the government to cancel the board exams scheduled to be held in May or asked them to conduct the exams online.

Besides, the India wide Parents Association too wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi requesting to cancel written exams for CBSE, state boards and instead to pass students through internal assessment.

Their letter also stated concern about the teachers and students not being vaccinated which gives them a higher chance of getting the virus.

The letter further mentioned how many countries have chosen against physical examinations for the safety of the students and requested Modi to discuss with all the state governments and adopt a uniform mode of assessment to save their future and academic year.

However, both the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) have said that they have taken safety measures for students and attendees; and all COVID-19 protocols will be followed during the exams.

Support pours in from all quarters

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said that the decision to hold exams must be reconsidered owing to the devastating second wave.

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has also written to the education minister to consider the demands of students for canceling the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) exams.

Shiv Sena party spokesperson Arvind Sawant also wrote to Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal and said: “Your intervention would mean national consensus, instead of a unilateral decision by any particular state”.

Actor Sonu Sood, who also stood against the conduct of NEET and JEE exams last year, requested the government to think again before conducting offline exams.

CBSE exam dates were announced in February for Class 10 and 12 exams will begin May 4, with all exams to be held in the offline-written mode, when the daily COVID 19 cases were less than 25,000 around India.

With as many as 1,68,912 COVID-19 cases reported in just 24 hours, concern over students’ safety arises, especially because children below 18 are not yet allowed to get the vaccine as the current age-eligible for the vaccination is currently 45.