Mumbai: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said on Wednesday that opposition-ruled states like Maharashtra, Punjab, West Bengal, Jharkhand should collectively approach the Supreme Court to postpone the NEET, JEE main examinations.
Banerjee, while participating in the discussion via video conferencing with Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and chief ministers of some opposition-ruled states, said that she has raised her concerns with the prime minister.
“Exams are due in September. Why should the lives of students be put at risk? We have written to the PM, but there has been no response. If the Prime Minister does not listen to us, then we (the states) should collectively consider approaching the Supreme Court,” she said.
Banerjee said that apart from disrupting the movement of trains, the COVID-19 epidemic has also had a negative impact on students’ mental health.
“I request the state governments, let us do it together. Go to the Supreme Court and request that it be postponed (until) the situation is correct. We stand by our students, who also need help. We stand by our students, whatever help they require, we are willing to do it,” she said.
Earlier, she had written a letter to PM Narendra Modi advising him to complete the terminal examinations by the end of September 2020. She claims among the rising COVID-19 numbers in the country, including the West, as a potential risk to students’ lives.
In her letter dated 24 August, Mamta wrote, “We should not endanger life during a pandemic by taking such unilateral, bureaucratic decisions.”
She also said, “We are proud of our students. They are talented in these fields. The COVID-19 pandemic is on the one hand and the student community, on the other, is currently suffering greatly from mental anguish and depression.”