by Khalid Bashir Gura
SRINAGAR: Amid the rise in daily positive cases and deaths due to coronavirus, the students of Islamic University of Science and Technology (IUST) demand online mode of exams. The exams are scheduled from ending September to October.
The tentative date sheet issued by the varsity notifies that exam of Computer Science and Engineering, Electronics and Communications will be commencing from September 29.
The students are appearing in the exams are apprehensive about contracting coronavirus as the varsity had been previously designated as Covid-19 centre.
“There is this transition of season from September to October wherein much of the population catches flu. How would people differentiate between common cold and Covid-19?” said one of the aggrieved students of B. Tech, civil engineering final semester.
Even though the students were assured by the university administration that the exams, results and degrees will be completed till September, however, authorities have decided to conduct offline exams which students fear may drag the exams, results and degrees.
The aggrieved students are demanding that authorities must conduct their exams online before September 30 so that they would become eligible for admissions for the postgraduate programme.
“If our exams aren’t held before September 30, our provisional admissions in different Universities will be cancelled and we may have to appear in March,” said the student. The students say if the online mode of exams is conducted, everybody could have appeared in an exam conveniently.
“Some of us who have had qualified GATE exams and want to pursue higher studies. We had to submit degree and documents up till September 30.”
In an online mode students have to appear in viva comprising 40 marks and theory of 60 marks which will be MCQ based. “We rarely find such precedence in contemporary universities, IIT’s within and outside the UT of J&K.”
Besides academics getting impacted due to university decisions, the students fear of the contracting virus and transmitting it to their families. “I have parents with co-morbidities. Who will ensure safety?” said another final semester student pursuing electrical engineering in the varsity. “Even the faculty at university want to conduct online exams says students but only higher authorities are adamant.”
As the university has students enrolled from far-flung areas, the students say that it is difficult for them to travel and find accommodations.
However, IUST VC, Dr Mushtaq Siddiqi said that exams will be conducted offline. “The schools have re-opened, why not a university?” The VC negated any dangers of contracting contagion amid pandemic. He assured the students that results and degrees will be given to them on time.