– Reshma Ravishanker
Amid rising cases of Covid-19 and an ongoing strike by the Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation staff, anxious students have been calling out the Visvesvaraya Technological University (VTU) for prioritising exams over student lives.
Taking to social media platforms, students have condemned the varsity for dithering over the postponement of exams. Exams for some semesters of B.E, B.Tech, and B.Arch are scheduled in April while some others are due to be conducted in April and May.
Karnataka reported as many as 19,067 cases of Covid-19 on April 18, taking the total active cases in the state to 1.3 lakh.
While one group of students have said that it would be a challenge to appear for exams due to Covid-19, others said that they might be unable to reach examination locations on time due to an ongoing strike by the transport department
Education counselor Dr Ashish Mahendra who took to Twitter also stood with the students saying that VTU must postpone or cancel exams keeping the welfare of students in mind.
“#postponevtuexams #vtu #savevtustudent postpone or conduct exams online for 1st sem which is on April 19 2021(tomorrow) for UG since no transportation facility due to bus strike and there is a huge increase in corona cases in Banglore (Bengaluru),” he said in a tweet.
Even members of the opposition parties have voiced out their support for VTU students. Avneeth Kateel, co-ordinator of the RTI Cell at NSUI, an affiliate to the Indian National Congress said in a video on a social media portal, “Remember the time when you came to students also seeking votes. They did not note based on ideology. It was for student welfare. Should the student community decide, it will take them little time to get the government crashing. Do not play with the lives of the students. Postpone exams,”
On April 18, the hashtag #postponeVTUexams was also trending on Twitter in India with over 4,800 relevant posts from students.
Student representative organisations that have called for the postponement of exams but in vain have been trying to instill confidence in the minds of students. “You are writing this examination under very troubled situation. But let’s take it as a challenge and put our best. Any outcome of this examination will not determine your knowledge. Let us face the situation boldly,” AIDSO said in a statement.
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