Centre gives nod to Class 10, 12 board exams with social distancing normsUpdated: May 21, 2020 00:00 IST
: The Union home ministry on Wednesday gave the go-ahead for conducting pending board exams with preventive measures like social distancing in place while granting them exemption from the ambit of the nationwide lockdown imposed to check the Covid-19 pandemic in late March.
The move came two days after the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) released its revised timetable for examinations of pending papers of Class 10 and 12 between July 1 and 15.
The ministry is the nodal agency for disaster management in the country. It is responsible for giving permissions for any activity when the Disaster Management Act, under which the lockdown has been imposed, is in force.
Union home minister Amit Shah made the announcement about the permission on Twitter. “Taking into consideration the academic interest of large number of students, it has been decided to grant exemption from the lockdown measures to conduct Board examination for classes 10th & 12th, with few conditions like social distancing, face mask etc, for their safety,” he tweeted.
Union home secretary Ajay Bhalla separately wrote a letter to all states and Union territories informing them about the conditional exemption citing requests for conducting the examinations. “Taking into consideration the academic interest of large number of students, it has been decided to grant exemption from lockdown measures to conduct Board Examinations for Class 10th and 12th,” the letter said. It added the exemption for exams will be subject to the condition that students, as well as the staff and teachers conducting them, will mandatorily wear face masks and follow social distancing. The letter said that everyone involved will be subject to thermal screening and will use sanitisers. The examinations will be conducted in a staggered manner and that local governments will arrange for transportation of students to the exam centres, it added.
The pandemic forced the closure of schools in March and resulted in the suspension of board exams across the country.
CBSE will conduct the exams for 12 subjects of Class 12 across the country. The examinations for six subjects of Class 10 will be held in north-east Delhi, where they were postponed because of the communal violence in February. The board had announced a revised schedule in March but the papers could not be conducted due to the lockdown.