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Polls force NBU to reschedule dates
- VC slams Election Commission

Siliguri, March 2: North Bengal University (NBU) has deferred all postgraduate and undergraduate examinations scheduled for April and May. The move, which will affect 65,000 students, comes in the wake of the Election Commission's decision to conduct Assembly polls in the state at that time.

In an official announcement yesterday, the commission declared that the Assembly elections in the state this time will be carried out in five phases between April 17 and May 8.

'We have deferred the whole schedule by a month, keeping the pattern intact ' the gaps between two exams remaining the same (see chart),' said Dilip Sarkar, the controller of examinations at the university.

Miffed at the large-scale postponement, NBU vice-chancellor P.K. Saha blamed the Election Commission for neglecting higher education.

'This time, the elections are being conducted for over a month, and the cost we are having to pay is very high. Our students and teachers come from all over the state. They have to be given a chance to exercise their franchise. This is why we cannot phase out our examinations though the whole of north Bengal will go to polls on May 8,' the vice- chancellor said.

Saha was primarily concerned about students who will appear for Part-II (BA, BSc and BCom) exams and may seek admission to universities in other states. 'Without marksheets, the students will not be able to seek admission elsewhere,' he added. He said the university would try to publish results of the final exams of undergraduate courses by July 15.

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