Students and parents from Seemandhra region heading for the Eamcet counselling conducted here on Monday, had a harrowing time reaching the city, as APSRTC buses remained off the roads due to the Samaikyandhra general strike.
Trains experienced unusual rush as they were the last resort for scores of candidates for reaching on time. With hardly any time left for booking berths, most students and their parents travelled in general compartment.
“We came by Janmabhoomi Express one day ahead of the schedule, and stayed at a relative’s place in the city. We had to travel in general compartment due to paucity of time and there was hardly any space even to stand,” complained G. Anuradha from Visakhapatnam, whose daughter Sreevidya attended the counselling under sports quota.
For Bhavani K., another parent, the journey was even more arduous. She, along with her son and daughter, travelled from Bobbili up to Visakhapatnam, and took Godavari Express to reach the city on Monday. With hardly any time left, they freshened themselves up in the railway station’s waiting room, and headed straight for the counselling at Masab Tank.
Some like P. Srihari from Nuzvid arrived by private vehicles, travelling after midnight so as to avoid mobs. Many paid exorbitant taxi fares.
Parents also had complaints about the lack of facilities near the counselling centre at Masab Tank. Neither tents were erected nor chairs arranged for parents and students waiting outside the centre. Even drinking water was not provided.
“To add insult to injury, the officials refused to accept currency notes in the denomination of Rs.1,000 as processing fee, suspecting there could be counterfeit currency. We had to run from pillar to post seeking change,” complained a parent. Lack of clarity about the dates of counselling left many students and parents baffled.
“There was very little time left. Till we came here, we were not sure if the counselling would be held at all as some media reports said the session was cancelled. We were in jitters as it had already been delayed by three months. Elsewhere, even the classes have begun,” Ms. Bhavani said.
For general category, counselling was conducted at five other locations, namely Government Institute of Printing Technology, East Marredpally, Dr. B. R. Ambedkar College, Baghlingampally, JNTU Kukatpally, Quli Qutub Shah Government Polytechnic College, Chandulal Baradari, and J.N. Government Polytechnic College, Ramanthapur.
For special categories
The Sanketika Vidya Bhavan at Masab Tank was the only counselling centre in the State for special categories such as Physically Handicapped, NCC and Sports. It was only certificate verification on Monday, with the exercise of online options scheduled from August 22 up to September 1. The turnout on the first day was remarkably low. Paramilitary forces with fire arms were deployed at the venue as a precaution.
The turnout on the first day of Eamcet counselling was remarkably low
Keywords: Seemandhra, Eamcet, APSRTC buses, Samaikyandhra general strike, Janmabhoomi Express, Visakhapatnam, Government Institute of Printing Technology, East Marredpally, BR Ambedkar College, Baghlingampally, JNTU Kukatpally, Quli Qutub Shah, Government Polytechnic College, Chandulal Baradari, and JN Government Polytechnic College, Ramanthapur