JNU to advance entrance test, raise exam fee; students cry foul

The Jawaharlal Nehru University’s (JNU) Academic Council has approved the proposal to advance its entrance test by five months, most likely from the academic year 2018-19, even as students slammed it as an “anti-student” move.

During the first part of the meeting conducted on Friday, the Council had decided to advance the varsity’s entrance exam, stating that by the time JNU completes its admission process by the end of July, several good students have taken admission in other universities.

“Several universities, including the Delhi University, admits students directly on the basis of their board exam or graduation results. Hence, they wrap up their admission process much before JNU,” a varsity official said, adding that the JNU cannot postpone its entrance exam a bit as it would then clash with the board or graduation exams, generally held in March or April.

Calling it an “anti-student” move, the varsity students said it will deprive many students coming from different boards and backgrounds of equal opportunity to clear the JNU entrance exam.

“This move will curtail due opportunities for students at large. For example, students applying for MA, MSc or MPhil will have to face the JNU entrance test even before they have studied for the final semester of their undergraduate or post-graduate courses,” said JNU Students’ Union President Mohit Pandey.

“Likewise, students appearing for BA first year will have to face the burden of JNU entrance test in the middle of their preparations for Class XII Board exams,” Pandey underlined, adding that the students applying for BA second year will be the most vulnerable as they will lose out on training of the second semester of the first year, which is so crucial to firm up learning and training in the relevant language to clear the entrance test for the second year.

The Council also decided to raise the registration fee. The fee for the SC, ST and physically handicapped students, however, will remain the same — Rs 220 per subject.

Meanwhile, after the second part of the meeting concluded on Monday, the varsity administration blamed the students of trying to disrupt the smooth functioning of the Council and stated: “A group of unruly students broke open the latch of the door of the room where the meeting was being held, came inside, and began to raise slogans against the Chairperson and the Academic Council members,” read a statement, adding that some Council members have asked for disciplinary action against these students.

Denying all charges, students said some students were protesting outside the meeting room, and entered the hall only after the meeting was over. “The Vice-Chancellor is trying to do all this to distract the students from important issues,” the Union members said.

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