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Students caught between polls & exams

Students associated with different political outfits are finding it hard to divide time between campaigning and studies with the Lok Sabha elections round the corner.

Even the university administration is facing a challenge in completing the syllabus on time.

Sumant Kumar, a mass communications postgraduate student of Patna University, said: Our examination would start from April 2 and continue till April 17. The same time span would also be the peak period of campaigning.

He added: Appearing in the examination is my first priority. However, for students, who nurture political ambitions, this is the time they can showcase their contribution towards the leaders and parties.

Sumant supports the RJD and plans to visit Madhepura to campaign in support of party candidate Pappu Yadav.

Apart from Sumant, there are other students with political ambitions too.

Raj Sinha, a first-year law student, said: I am lucky that my examination is over. However, I cant take the help of my friends for campaigning as their exams are yet to start.

Raj is a supporter of Ram Kripal Yadav, who recently switched from the RJD to the BJP. Yadav will contest from Pataliputra with RJD boss Lalu Prasads daughter Misa Bharti as one of the rivals.

The examination season at Patna University (PU) started in the last week of February and is likely to end in May. The upcoming elections is a worry for the university, as the examinations of postgraduate and undergraduate courses have to be conducted with a view to regularise the academic calendar.

Sources said any change in the examination schedule now would hamper the academic calendar.

PU registrar Balram Tiwari said: The upcoming Lok Sabha elections have put the university administration in a tight spot. The date of election coincides with the postgraduate examination and the district administration has requisitioned teaching and non-teaching employees for poll duty.

The PU postgraduate examination for many subjects is scheduled on April 17, the day when Patna would go to the polls. Sources said the university administration would be left with no other option but to postpone the exam date.

The sources added that from Patna Science College, 80 teaching and non-teaching employees have been requisitioned for poll duty.

From Patna College, 63 employees have been requisitioned.

According to the university administration, if so many teachers are engaged in election duty, it would face difficulty in getting teachers to oversee the examinations as invigilators.

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