State Level Eligibility Test candidates from three districts, who had to come to Tirunelveli to appear for the examination on Sunday, suffered a lot due to inadequate bus service.

With the dream of becoming lecturers in the universities and colleges in Tamil Nadu, a few thousands of unemployed youths from Tirunelveli, Tuticorin and Kanyakumari districts appeared for the State Level Eligibility Test (SLET) held at select centres in Tirunelveli on Sunday.

Even as either their parents or husbands were looking after their kids under the shades available near the examination centres, young women wrote the day-long examination.

While expressing satisfaction over their performance in the examination, most of the candidates said they had to struggle a lot to take the bus to Tirunelveli in the morning.

“I'm coming from Kaliyakkavilai on Kanyakumari–Kerala border and hence I had to travel for nearly 3 hours with my one-year old baby and my mother to reach the examination centre at 9 a.m. Since adequate number of buses was not operated from Nagercoil, the candidates struggled a lot in the morning. And the situation is still worse in the evening,” said B. Vijayalakshmi.

Though the officials of Tamil Nadu State Transport Corporation had known very well that there would be a mad rush in all the bus-stands in Tuticorin and Kanyakumari districts to take the buses to reach the examination centres in neighbouring Tirunelveli, adequate number of buses were not operated to ensure the candidates' hassle-free travel, the candidates complained.

It was so agonising to see the candidates and other passengers running behind the buses to ensure a seat for them.

The situation could have improved a lot if the TNSTC officials posted at the Vaeinthaankulam new bus-stand could organise some special buses to the destinations for which the crowd was immense.

When asked about the non-availability of buses, the TNSTC drivers and conductors said a sizable number of buses, mostly new vehicles running between Nagercoil and Tirunelveli and Tuticorin and Tirunelveli, had been impounded by the court after the public sector undertaking failed to pay compensation for the accident victims.

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