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Punjab says can’t hold final-yr exams, urges UGC to reconsider

July 09, 2020 07:06 AM


Punjab says can’t hold final-yr exams, urges UGC to reconsider


Reeling under heavy surge of Covid-19 cases, the Punjab government has expressed its inability to conduct examinations for final year students of colleges and universities and urged the University Grants Commission (UGC) to reconsider its guidelines.

The commission on July 6 had issued guidelines making examinations mandatory, though the colleges and universities have been given the option of postponing the examinations, which can be held either online or offline mode, till September.

“For ensuring the safety of students and staff, the Punjab government has requested the UGC to review its guidelines,” said an official of the state’s higher education department.


Surge in Punjab pulls recovery rate down to 67%

Punjab’s Covid-19 load is heavy — 6,907 positive cases and 178 deaths — even as number of cases has been on a steady rise. The growth rate of cases in the state from June 1 to June 8 ranged between 1% and 6% against the national growth rate of 3-4%. The surge in cases has also led to a drop in recovery rate to 67%, which once had touched the 80% mark. The doubling rate of cases has also come down to 25.2 after going as high as 102 days.

According to sources, the Punjab government has conveyed to the UGC that holding examinations under the prevailing circumstances is not feasible as premises of majority of higher education institutions are being used as centres for treating Covid-19 patients.

The Amarinder government also expressed apprehension over students accessing information technology infrastructure to give online exams. Supporting its contention, the state government pleaded that over 30% of the students belonging to Schedule Caste population do not have required resources — internet connection, smartphones and computers — due to financial constraints.

After waiting for UGC, the Punjab government on July 4 had announced its own guidelines allowing government\private institutes to promote students with riders.

As per the guidelines issued by the state government, the universities which are in the process of conducting online examinations have been allowed to do so after taking permission from the higher education department

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