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CAT tamed, almost

mumbai Updated: Dec 01, 2009 02:23 IST

The online Common Admission Test (CAT) crisis in the city seems to have calmed down.

On Monday, the third day of the 10-day test, about a 100 students were not able to take the exam and were sent back from centres. Though the figure is significant, it has reduced from the previous two days.

Some labs at the MH Saboo Siddik College of Engineering and Fr Conceicao Rodrigues College remained shut through the day.

But unlike Sunday, some students received an SMS and e-mail about cancellation of their exam on Monday.

“There were a few students, who had not received the SMS but many of us received it late last evening. I still stuck around because I read about a Bangalore student who was sent back but then her exam took place later and she was marked absent,” said Vernit Lakhaney, a student whose exam was cancelled. “We are in limbo now with one of the best management institutes not being able to manage its entrance test.”

Aspirants are now worrying about the rescheduled dates.

“No one has received any new dates. They were told that they would receive it in 48 hours but nothing has come so far. Affected students have been left in the lurch. The CAT helpline is constantly busy,” said Arks Srinivas of T.I.M.E Institute, a coaching centre.

Ramesh Nava of Prometric, the US firm that developed the online CAT said in a press release, “Exhaustive plans were developed and put in place well in advance of the start of the testing window. Unfortunately, viruses that attacked the test delivery system were not detected by the anti-virus software at the testing centres.”

HRD Ministry seeks report on CAT

The Human Resource Development Ministry has written to the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) on Monday, asking for a status report on their Common Admission Test (CAT).

The letter has been sent to CAT convener Satish Deodhar, referring to the ongoing disruption of the first ever online entrance test for admission into the IIMs.

The ministry, which had so far stayed out of the controversy, has asked Deodhar for a factual report on the disruption in the test, which is being conducted over 10 days by American firm Prometric, a ministry official said.

On Monday, IIM aspirants’ troubles continued, with technical glitches disrupting exams for the third consecutive day.

Software malfunction saw candidates return without writing the test at some centres at Mumbai, Bangalore and Ghaziabad.

About 2.41 lakh students are scheduled to appear in the test for admission into seven IIMs and a few other B-schools.

In the first two days of the testing, nearly 4,000 students could not appear for the test. On Sunday, Prometric issued a statement saying the glitches were due to a virus attack, which could be contained.