Ranchi, Aug 27 (PTI) Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren wrote to Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhrial 'Nishank' on Thursday, urging him to postpone the JEE and NEET.
Soren said that since there is no way to detect and prevent a COVID-positive candidate from appearing in the examination, it would put the rest of the people present in a venue at the risk of being infected.
'...conduct of examinations of this scale would require public transport and hospitality units such as hotels, lodges and restaurants to function smoothly and optimally because of the movement of a large number of examinees and their guardians,' he said.
However, the state government has neither permitted public buses to resume services nor allowed the opening of hotels and restaurants in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, he added.
'Thus the examinees and their guardians are likely to face serious logistic issues,' the chief minister said.
Soren further said that there would be some examinees who live in containment zones and it will be difficult for them to move out of the area.
'In view of the above, I would earnestly request you to kindly consider postponing these two examinations in the public interest,' he said in the letter.
The letter came a day after seven chief ministers of non-BJP ruled states, including Soren, agreed to the need for filing a review petition, urging the Supreme Court to reconsider its recent order rejecting the postponement of the competitive exams.
The government has defended its move to go ahead with the exams despite mounting pressure to defer them, saying that over two-thirds of candidates have downloaded the admit cards which shows that students want these exams to be conducted at any cost.
Congress and various opposition parties have demanded that NEET and JEE be deferred due to the COVID-19 pandemic and floods in parts of the country.
While the JEE-Main is scheduled from September 1-6, NEET will be held on September 13. PTI IKD SOM SOM