J&K Govt Reschedules Board Exams to Push Panchayat, Local Body Polls

President PSAK rues govt’s ‘misplaced priorities’, calls move ‘detrimental’ to students’ careers

Srinagar: In a surprise move, the administration on Thursday decided to hold the 10th and 12th class examinations from the first week of November as against the Board of School Education’s (BOSE) earlier announcement of holding the same from 15th November.

While the students are visibly aghast at the announcement, the president of the Kashmir Private Schools Association, G N Var said the move will jeopardise the careers of tens of thousands of students who are still reeling under the effects of the lockdown imposed in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic. The move, he alleged, highlights the administration’s ‘misplaced priorities’ by placing education on the back-burner and pushing ‘something totally unimportant in its place’.

“Education has never been a priority for the government here,” Var alleged. “On several occasions in the past as well, the government either preponed or postponed exams to hold the elections only ending up hitting the education of innocent students.”

Var said neither the students nor the schools were in favour of mass promotion at any time but the government’s misplaced priorities forced us to go for it.

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“The government has rescheduled exams at least on three occasions previously only to facilitate elections,” he said. “It looks like politics is more important to the administration than the career of students.”

He said in absence of a democratic political set up, the administration which has been left at the whims and mercy of bureaucrats, has suffered enormously in Kashmir.”

A top official of the J&K Board Of School education (BOSE) while expressing his helplessness over the matter said the ‘inconsiderate’ administrators at the helm have cultivated a culture of bad policies resulting in a chaos everywhere. “What is a trivial election in comparison to the future of tens of thousands of students,” he asked.

“Why put the careers of students at stake by rescheduling the exams,” the official said while speaking on the condition of anonymity. “They could easily postpone the polls by a week or so.”

“There are at least 30 different combinations for class 12 and it’s a cumbersome job to frame a date sheet and when you intersperse it with 10th class examination, it becomes all the more difficult,” he said.

A top bureaucrat, he said, lost his cool at a meeting when a BOSE official tried to persuade him to rethink his decision. “Aap yehan bacha politics nahi chala sakte (You can’t run your politics by using children),” the bureaucrat reportedly admonished the official. “A date is a date and children wouldn’t have any problems in accepting it.”

When contacted, Joint Secretary BOSE, Examinations Ajaz Hakak said we’re still trying to persuade the government to rethink its decision.

“I guess within another two or three days the decision would be formally finalised,” Hakak told Kashmir Observer. “The government has however instructed the BOSE to get ready for the examinations,” he said.

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