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Exam dates too close to polls for comfort

- Varsity first-semester assessment to begin on December 14, students worried

Patna University students are sceptical about the authorities’ decision to schedule first semester examination of postgraduate courses three days after elections to their union this year.

The elections — taking place after 28 years — are scheduled on December 11. The examinations, the timetable for which was released on Tuesday night, are slated to begin on December 14 and will continue till January 7.

The students claim that the proximity of the two dates would affect their preparations for the examination and the elections.

“Various students’ bodies have begun to campaign vigorously for the elections. As the polls near, the campaigning would become more hectic. This would affect the preparations for the examination,” said first-year economics student Gaurav Shandilya.

Others are worried that with a little over a month left for both the events, the syllabus of various courses would remain incomplete as the hullabaloo over the elections pick pace.

“More than 50 per cent of the syllabus remains to be completed in our department,” said Raja, a first-year economics student.

He added: “There are many topics of micro- and macro-economics that need to be taught. It would be difficult to finish the syllabus as the Diwali and Chhath vacations would also interrupt classes.”

The Diwali vacations are scheduled to start on November 11 and would continue till November 20. Chhath is slated on November 19.

“We would have no alternative but to take the examinations with incomplete syllabi,” added Raja.

Varsity authorities are of the opinion that the close dates would not affect the two events, which are exclusive.

PU examination controller Binay Soren said: “Elections would not affect the semester examinations. The elections would get over three days before the exams begin. Students would not be affected in the least.”

Soren’s claim has got some support from a few students.

Rahul Kumar Gaurav, a first-year history student, said: “The syllabus in our department is almost complete. We have already begun preparing for the examinations.”

He added: “After the introduction of the semester system, students have to study round-the-year. Class tests and unit tests are conducted at regular intervals.

“So preparing for end-semester examination would not be a problem.”

The semester system for postgraduate courses was introduced at PU this year on the advice of the University Grants Commission. The teaching methodology and the syllabus at most departments were tailored for the new system in August when the session began.

The new syllabus was deigned keeping in mind the courses offered at top educational institutions in the country like Jawaharlal Nehru University or Delhi University. The students would also be shown their answer scripts.

Most universities in the country have shifted to the semester system.