Greta Thunberg Stands with Indian Students, Demands Postponement of JEE & NEET

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Greta Thunberg, the iconic global climate activist, recently supported the struggle to postpone Joint Entrance Test (JEE) and National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) exams in India, which are due to be held in September. Read on to find out.

Greta took to social media and openly expressed her views. She tweeted against the examinations taking place during the pandemic and added the hashtag #PostponeJEE_NEETinCOVID to show solidarity with Indian students. Recently, she expressed her views against the matter over Instagram as well.

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The reaction received by Greta on her post has been a mixed one. While many students responded positively, some critically judged her for her stand.

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Nationwide protests against conductance of NEET and JEE are being held online. Recently, #MODIJI_POSTPONEJEENEET started trending on the popular social media website, Twitter. Students and parents from across the country have been demanding to cancel the crucial examinations. They are highlighting the adversities faced by them during these recent times. Many states like Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have been affected catastrophically by floods, cyclones as well as CoVID-19.

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The exams were cancelled in May when the nationwide lockdown was imposed. Both JEE and NEET are national entrance examinations held for the admissions in the nation’s most reputed engineering as well as medical colleges respectively. Both examinations have also been regarded as one of the most strenuous and demanding examinations around the world.

Politics of the Examination

Many politicians have also expressed their concern regarding the decision to conduct examinations in these unsafe conditions caused due to CoVID.

“Students and parents are under enormous mental stress. Considering the current restrictions on public transportation, the allotted exam centres are not uniformly accessible to all aspirants,” said, DMK supremo, MK Stalin in a letter to the Union Education Minister, Ramesh Pokhriyal.

BJP leader and Rajya Sabha member Subramanian Swami Friday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to direct the Ministry of Education (MoE) conduct the JEE-Main, NEET and other competitive exams after Diwali in view of the Covid-19 pandemic situation in the country. Delhi’s deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia urged the Union government to cancel the two nationwide tests “immediately” and make “an alternative arrangement” for admissions this year.

This comes after the Supreme Court dismissed the plea seeking postponement of the two entrance tests, observing that the career of the students cannot be put on peril for long and a full academic year cannot be wasted. The three-judge bench of the apex court headed by Justice Arun Mishra stated, “Though there is a pandemic situation, ultimately life has to go.”

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Anamika Ghai
I'm from Chandigarh, currently settled in Delhi, for my university. The pollution got the best of me, but I try.

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