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Laptops to 4G internet: Jamia Millia’s online exam diktat sparks anger in Kashmir

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Srinagar: Athar Irshad is having sleepless nights since his university issued the notification for online exams. 

A student of MA political science at Jamia Millia Islamia, Athar hails from Danghiwachi, a place in north Kashmir’s Baramulla where internet and electricity are a luxury. 

“I can’t comprehend what to do. Our professions are in question. A large portion of the understudies don’t have workstations. We have a moderate 2G web which is consistently troublesome. Furthermore, the college has said if the web snaps over the span of the assessment, understudies would be excluded. We don’t need concession. However, as different colleges, Jamia too should hold pen and paper tests,” he said.

This is not an isolated case. Around 700 students from Jammu and Kashmir are studying in Jamia and most of them are from poor backgrounds.

Since the annulment of Article 370 on August 5 a year ago, 4G internet providers have been snapped across Jammu and Kashmir. Aside from Ganderbal and Udhampur, any remaining 18 areas don’t have fast web. Just low speed 2G internet providers are accessible in the 18 regions.

Sensing trouble, J&K Students Association has written to HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal and Jamia Vice-Chancellor Najma Akhtar, urging them to scrap online proctored mode of examination.

 “Jamia administration’s arbitrary decision to conduct online proctored mode of examination is inconsiderate to the issues raised by the students. It is very evident that these guidelines reinforce the spirit of elitism in our education system because students from marginalized communities cannot afford laptops and PCs’. Exam and education should never be a privilege. This new diktat makes education a privilege instead of right which will lead to depression among the students,” said Nasir Khuehami, spokesman of J&K Students Association.

He said a greater part of Jamia understudies have a place with in reverse regions of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, J&K, and other southern states.

“Such an exclusionary and uncalled for method of test will destroy their profession. Understudies from varying backgrounds should be put on an equivalent standing and the overall will should be kept in thought.

This choice has been taken in a totally undemocratic way with no thought with understudies,” he said.

Khuehami added that the inaccessibility of fast web network has hampered and ended the cycle of online classes of understudies.

 “Due to the continuous ban on 4G Services, Kashmiri students would not be able to attend exams. Most students hail from a lower class and have no source of income. The education sector has been the worst victim in Kashmir valley and with internet services snapped; the students have no source to attend exams in such circumstances. Heavy snowfall in Kashmir leads to power cuts for 7-8 hours and due to which students won’t have any alternative of Wi-Fi services as well. In addition to this, frequent power cuts, harsh winters, the exams are no way possible in Kashmir valley,” he said.

“Jamia’s choice to hold tests in delegated online mode which requires PCs and fast information for 3 hours is profoundly hazardous for understudies hailing from J&K. Solicitation them to search for choices with the goal that these brilliant personalities don’t endure… .Spoke to Jaffrey Sahab, Controller assessments at Jamia about issues looked by understudies from J&K who need to take tests through delegated online mode. He guaranteed to roll out fundamental improvements and recommended that understudies incapable to take these tests email @jmiu_official,” tweeted Mehbooba.

 Former chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti too spoke to the controller of examinations, Jamia Millia Islamia, and discussed problems faced by the students.

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