National

MHA exempts board exams from lockdown measures

Long hiatus: Students were in the middle of the Board exams when the lockdown was imposed.

Long hiatus: Students were in the middle of the Board exams when the lockdown was imposed.  

Students and teachers will have to compulsorily wear face masks, says the Ministry

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on Wednesday exempted the pending Class 10 and Class 12 board examinations to be conducted by the State boards and the Central board from the lockdown measures. Students and teachers will have to compulsorily wear face masks and there should be provision of thermal screening and sanitisers at all examination centres.

Also read: CBSE announces dates for pending Class X and XII examinations

Union Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted on Wednesday, “Taking into consideration the academic interest of large number of students, it has been decided to grant exemption from the lockdown measures to conduct Board examination for classes 10th & 12th, with few conditions like social distancing, face mask etc, for their safety.”

The country has been placed under a lockdown since March 24 in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the fourth phase has been extended till May 31. Several State boards and the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) were about to start or were in the middle of conducting the examinations when the lockdown was imposed. The CBSE recently released the date sheet of remaining 29 papers of Class 10 and 12 to be held from July 1 to July 15 across the country.

Earlier this week, the Kerala government postponed the pending Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC), higher secondary and vocational higher secondary examinations to be held in the last week of May as lockdown was extended.

Under the fresh lockdown measures guidelines issued by the MHA under the Disaster Management Act, 2005 on May 17, opening of schools has been prohibited.

“Requests have been received from the State governments and the CBSE for conducting the Board examinations and the matter has been examined in the Ministry of Home Affairs. Taking into consideration the academic interest of large number of students it has been decided to grant exemption from the lockdown measures to conduct Board examinations for Classes X and XII,” a letter by Union Home Secretary Ajay Bhalla to all States said.

Subject to conditions

It said the exemption would be subject to conditions such as mandatory wearing of face masks by students, staff and teachers and examination centres in containment zones would not be permitted. “There shall be provision of thermal screening and sanitiser at all centres and social distancing at all the examination centres,” the letter said.

The MHA said examination schedules be staggered and “special buses may be arranged by the States and the UTs for transportation of students to the examination centres.”

Asked how the students living in containment zones will be allowed to take the examinations, a senior Home Ministry official said, “they should be allowed with their admit card. Earlier also students living in curfew-hit areas have been allowed on the basis of admit cards.”

The official said that in case a student had high temperature on the day of examination there were provisions for such students to appear for exams.

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Printable version | May 31, 2020 9:45:38 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/mha-exempts-board-exams-from-lockdown-measures/article31634960.ece

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