First riots, then COVID-19: Board exams 'test of patience' for class 10, 12 students in New Delhi

First riots, then COVID-19: Board exams 'test of patience' for class 10, 12 students in New Delhi

New Delhi, April 7

With all lessons revised and new stationary bought, 14-year-old Ravi Kumar was ready to spend a relaxed evening before his class 10 board exam the next day when the news of communal violence in northeast Delhi broke, ultimately leading to postponement of the exam by CBSE in affected areas.

But, for the students in northeast Delhi, the wait for the exams has become an "test of patience" with it being postponed again, this time due to the coronavirus outbreak, and no clarity emerging yet on when the exams will be held.

Rani Kumari says that while trying to concentrate on studies amid the fear of knock on doors during the communal violence over the amended citizenship law that brought northeast Delhi to a standstill, she was confident that "this too shall pass".

"It has become an endless wait and now I don't feel like studying too. Earlier I thought that this too shall pass. How much can one study the same thing over and over again? May be I will begin revision when the date sheet is announced," said the class 12 student from Maujpur who wants to join nursing school.

Kumar, a resident of Chandbagh, told PTI, "Right from childhood, we are taught that board exams are too crucial and have to be focussed at least two years in advance. It all seems immaterial now, the entire enthusiasm is gone. Bigger than board exams now is this exam of patience." 

Gagandeep Singh, who lives in Gokalpuri area, said, "I think I will remember how disturbed I was during my class 10 exams all my life. The stress of exams and scoring well seems immaterial now, when we are facing riots and global pandemic."

In February, the northeast part of the national capital was rocked by violence in which 53 people were killed and over 200 injured. The areas worst affected in the violence included Jaffrabad, Maujpur, Chand Bagh, Khureji Khas and Bhajanpura.

In view of the violence, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) had postponed exams at over 80 centres in northeast Delhi area till February 29.

The exams were, however, conducted as per original schedule from March 2 onwards as board officials opined that any further delay in conducting exams will affect the students' prospects in undergraduate admissions.

The board had announced a fresh schedule, according to which class 12 exams in the area were supposed to begin on March 31 and conclude on April 14, while exams for class 10 were scheduled from March 21 to March 30.

However, the exams had to be again postponed in view of the coronavirus outbreak its resultant 21-day nationwide lockdown.

According to board officials, students will be given a 10-day notice before exams are conducted when the lockdown is lifted.

The death toll due to novel coronavirus rose to 114 and the number of cases in the country climbed to 4,421 on Tuesday, according to the Union Health Ministry. PTI

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