Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Students worst victims of blockade

Frequent nationwide shutdowns and non-stop blockades are causing immense inconvenience to thousands of students and their guardians as this is the time of the year when admission tests and final examinations in educational institutions are usually held. Terming the blockade as a destructive act, education minister Nurul Islam Nahid has expressed annoyance over the postponement of exams and admission tests, and urged the opposition to refrain from calling blockade programmes. “I am deeply concerned
about the future of students. I urge the opposition not to call any more blockades or hartals, considering the future of our children,” he said on Wednesday.
About 20 lakh Junior School Certificate (JSC) and Junior Dhakil Certificate (JDC) examinees were among the worst victims as the examinations were rescheduled several times due to frequent nationwide shutdown or blockades.
As many as 7.45 lakh students, who passed the HSC and equivalent exams this year and are preparing for being enrolled at different universities, have been severely affected by such disruptive political programmes.
The admission test of Islamic University has been deferred three times, while admission tests for two units of the University of Chittagong have been postponed for four times. The admission tests of Barisal University, Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University, Sylhet Agricultural University and Chittagong University have also been deferred several times.
Although the DU authorities took the admission test, it could not hold the viva voce for the successful students. The authorities had to change the date of the test several times, a university official said.
Abdul Ali Sujan, who cracked the admission test of DU told The Independent that he had appeared for the DU and Jagannath University admission tests with trepidation as he could not move freely before the exams. Sujan also said that the viva test of DU, scheduled for November 29, had also been deferred.
Masudur Rahman, guardian of an admission-seeker, said he was deeply worried about his son’s future. Rahman’s son could not crack the DU admission test. “I don’t know whether my son will be able to take other admission tests as political parties are calling shutdown frequently without bothering about the future of students,,” he added.
Students apply for admission in several universities and they need to travel from one city to another as there is paucity of seats in public universities. Admission tests usually take place on Friday, but general strikes and blockades enforced before and after the tests have put admission-seekers from faraway places in serious trouble.
Barisal University deferred the admission tests twice. Admission tests in Sher-e-Bangla Agricultural University scheduled for Nov 29 was postponed for an indefinite period. Admission test in Sylhet Agri University scheduled for Dec 1 had also been postponed.
RU admission tests had been deferred to December 5–9, which were supposed to be held from November 10–14. But, the rescheduled test was also postponed for indefinite period due to blockades.
Comilla University postponed its admission test scheduled for Nov 6-8, but the new date was yet to be announced.
Ayub Ali Rana, a third-year student of the Jagannath University, told this correspondent that his final-year exam could not take place due to political turmoil. “We may lose one year in our career as we are going to have one year session jam for the ongoing blockade,” he added.
Besides the university admission tests, the four-day Junior School Certificate examination was deferred. Several examinations of the SSC and the HSC were also deferred because of political programmes this year.
Class I-IV and VI–IX annual examinations are also badly hit due to frequent shutdowns.
The current academic year may get delayed due to the current blockades that has been seriously disrupting the final round of printing and distribution.
Students at primary and secondary levels got fresh textbooks on the first day of the academic year since 2010. Officials and printers fear that they might not be able to do that this year. The printers could not do the last-moment printing as papers did not reach the press. They also could not send the already-printed books for binding as the binders could not clear their stocks for distribution, official sources said.
The government started distributing free textbooks among the students from class 1 to class 10 in 2010.

-With The Independent input

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