| People queue up to purchase IIT-JEE examination forms at the State Bank of India main branch near Gandhi Maidan in Patna on Tuesday. Picture by Deepak Kumar |
Patna, Nov. 16: Different branches of State Bank of India (SBI) witnessed a mad rush for IIT-JEE, 2011, forms since early morning today. Forms started selling across the country since November 12 (online since November 1), but the sale began in Bihar on Monday only, after the Chhath holidays.
The Patna SBI main branch was among the 12 branches where forms are available. Among the students queuing up for forms was Nawin Kumar, who had arrived around 8.45am.
Nawin said: “Around 550 students had queued up ahead of me waiting for their turn.” Nawin could finally get the form at 3pm. Waiting in the queue for more than six hours, Nawin had feared that he would get the form today.
In the afternoon, the bank authorities informed students in the queue that they had run out of challans (slips) and they would not get the forms before Thursday, as the banks would remain closed on the occasion of Bakri Id on Wednesday.
Several students said that challans were issued only in the morning and that too, only for around an hour.
Sources said students, especially those who could not make it yesterday, had started gathering in front of the bank since 4am.
Annu Kumar, an appearing candidate, said that he was there since 9.30am. An exhausted Annu said: “For hours, I have been waiting here but in vain. If I had known that it would take so long and that challans would fall short, I would have come on Thursday.”
Asked about opting for online form filling, Annu said: “If we apply online, we doubt whether or not we would get examination centres of our choice. Moreover, admit cards are mostly not delivered.”
Another candidate, Sweta Suman, who is pursuing studies from Jehanabad, had sent her brother to collect the form at 10am. Sweta said: “I had sent my brother to fetch the form well in time. But even after around four-and-a-half hours, he had not been able to collect the form. He, along with others, was told that the challans had been exhausted. I don’t think that I will get the form before Thursday.”
Rakesh Kumar, pursuing studies from Muzaffarpur, had come here along with two of his friends. Waiting for the form since 9am, Rakesh preferred to sit along with others on the ground. By 2pm he was tired and since it was the lunch break for the bank employees, he kept sitting on an empty stomach. Rakesh said: “I don’t know whether I would get the form today or not.”
Sumit Kumar, who too was waiting on an empty stomach, said: “We have been waiting for hours but haven’t got the forms.” Special arrangements had been made for the girls, which irritated the boys since they were seen waiting for their turns out in the open, while the girls were seen waiting inside. Some of the boys even complained that the girls got the challans even in the afternoon and they were getting forms at a faster pace.
At 4.15pm, the bank authorities abruptly shut down the form distribution counter, triggering a heated exchange of words with the candidates. A skirmish broke out and police drove away the candidates for the day.