Students take exams amid shutdown in Valley

Published - November 15, 2016 01:17 am IST - Srinagar:

THE WAY FORWARD:  Examinations under way at a centre in Srinagar on Monday.

THE WAY FORWARD: Examinations under way at a centre in Srinagar on Monday.

Around 95% of students registered appeared on the day one of the annual examination of Class 12 on Monday in Kashmir amid unrest and a call for shutdown by separatists.

A Board of School Education (BOSE) official said of 31,964 students who registered for the exam, 30,213 appeared in 484 centres that were highly guarded.

All volatile districts of south and central Kashmir witnessed more than 90% attendance despite several students’ associations opposing the government move to hold the examination in November.

Around 35 schools have been burnt down in the Valley in the past three months.

“We could not have afforded to sit for examination next year. We have to prepare for professional courses from January and appear for entrance tests from May,” said Amir Ali, a student.

Kashmir has been reeling under unrest and the call for shutdown by seperatists for more than four months now. There were demands to postpone the examinations to next year as “students could not prepare for the examination due to turmoil”.

Carpooling to the rescue

Though transport was largely hit due to the call for shutdown, many pooled cars to ferry students to the exam centres. A large number of anxious parents were seen waiting outside the centres.

Meanwhile, minor disruptions were reported in the Valley. An attempt was made to set ablaze the Government High School Dasan, Hardupanzo zone, in central Kashmir’s Budgam district on Sunday night.

Eight exam centres were relocated in Budgam and Pulwama districts. Unidentified persons hurled rocks at a building where Class 12 students were taking their test in Budgam even as security forces resorted to tear gas shelling. Some incidents of harassment of students returning home were also reported.

“We are satisfied. There were minor incidents [of disruptions] but the overall situation was peaceful. I am happy there is a consensus in society over the examination and all stakeholders have lent their support,” State Education Minister Nayeem Akhtar told The Hindu .

Class X exams from today

A huge contingent of security forces, including police and paramilitary troopers, manned the centres, categorised as “sensitive” and ‘highly sensitive’. Class 10 students were set to sit for the exam from Tuesday.

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