Had everything gone well, Ima M R would have already completed her B.Sc degree from the University of Delhi. As she was set to write her final semester exams in 2019, she was diagnosed with severe depressive disorder because of which she had to take a break and write her exams in 2020 instead.
And the unexpected happened. When the pandemic hit the country, all the educational institutions- schools, colleges, universities, etc. had to be shut down and the fluency of the studies was interrupted. And many, including the University of Delhi, decided to hold online examinations. Even after so many protests, the University is firm in its decision to hold examinations. While there were a lot of discriminatory attitudes and there were a lot of voices against it, Ima tells us that there is a negative impact on students’ mental health due to the unwanted pressure of examinations.
A few days ago, she posted a video on Instagram, addressed to Delhi University’s Vice-Chancellor, Yogesh Tyagi where she is found speaking about mental pressure being faced by the students. “Sir, do you want us to write our open-book online examination on a website that often crashes? You’re escalating my anxiety [sic].” There have been complaints about the website crashing during the examination registration. “Sir, you’re mocking the underprivileged. There are already enough things that make us mentally vulnerable. We can’t take anymore,” she is heard saying.
The OBE protests haven’t had any impact on University and are rather deteriorating mental health of students. In these times of unstable circumstances, mental breakdowns are very common and online examinations are adding to that.