"I stand with them": Greta Thunberg backs postponement of JEE, NEET 2020
By Vivek Raj | Galatta | Aug 25, 2020, 04:45 pm
Climate activist and global icon Greta Thunberg on Tuesday took to ]Twitter to express her support for the nationwide "postpone JEE NEET" movement saying it is "deeply unfair" to the students to ask them appear for the exams in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and floods in several parts of the country. Ms Thunberg, who has 4.1 million followers on Twitter, had invited numerous responses for her tweet from across the globe, where the hashtag "MODIJI_POSTPONEJEENEET" was already trending.
She tweeted, "It’s deeply unfair that students of India are asked to sit national exams during the Covid-19 pandemic and while millions have also been impacted by the extreme floods. I stand with their call to #PostponeJEE_NEETinCOVID". Although her tweet received many responses, the climate activist, having just returned to school after a "gap year" of creating awareness about the climate emergency, has also faced a lot of backlash for her latest stand. Check out her tweet below:
It’s deeply unfair that students of India are asked to sit national exams during the Covid-19 pandemic and while millions have also been impacted by the extreme floods. I stand with their call to #PostponeJEE_NEETinCOVID— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) August 25, 2020
With the call for the postponement of the JEE, NEET already vocal, the demand to cancel the IIT and medical entrance exams has also been gaining steam across the country. Students and parents in states like Assam, Bihar, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal have been pointing out the devastation caused by the floods.
Politicians from various parties too are backing the demand highlighting that the announcement of the exams to proceed is not just "unsafe" due to COVID-19, but also "unjust" due to the floods in several parts of the country. DMK chief MK Stalin wrote a letter to the Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal saying, "Students and parents are under enormous mental stress. Considering the current restrictions on public transportation, the allotted exam centres are not uniformly accessible to all aspirants,". Former Union Education Minister and senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal expressed similar views saying the move towards education "elitist".
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Education is standing with its stance to proceed with the JEE and NEET exams scheduled to be held in the first half of September. The Supreme Court too has dismissed petitions in regard to the postponement of the exams and stated that "life cannot be stopped". Since August 8, India has been recording the highest daily spike in the number of coronavirus cases, with more than 31 lakh cases of the disease logged in total to date and the number of casualties rising up to 58,390.