Bollywood actor Sonu Sood hopped on the bandwagon of activists and politicians who have appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to assess the health risk amid COVID-19 outbreak, and postpone the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) and National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) until the situation becomes conducive to hold the exams.
Sonu’s tweet read, “It’s my request to (the) government of India, to postpone the #Neet/#JEE exams in the current situation of the country! In the given #COVID19 situation, we should care utmost & not risk the lives of students! #PostponeJEE_NEETinCOVID.”
The actor, who has been actively responding to pleas on Twitter, has not just extended a helping hand to the migrant crisis that surfaced during the pandemic, but also other issues like unemployment and healthcare for those in need.
But it seems like some fans take it too far to grab the actor’s attention on the microblogging platform.
A Twitter user who goes by the name Ananya Singh, shared a wrist cut picture, seeking help for the exams to be postponed.
Sood wrote, “This is not an examination only for students. It’s an examination for the Government too. Govt. has an opportunity to excel by postponing #JEE_NEET for 60 days. Make it happen and bring those smiles back. Students & Govt. can prepare in this time window. #PostponeJEE_NEET”
Replying to the same, Singh wrote, “Help us sir pless”, along with the picture.
However, the post backfired as several Twitter users called her out for sharing an old picture from the internet and using it grab eyeballs amid the burning issue.
Some even slammed the id for using a picture to invoke suicidal thoughts, while others asserted it is a bot account.
Several students and political leaders across the country, including Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Maharashtra Cabinet Minister Aaditya Thackeray, and DMK President M K Stalin among others, have urged the central government to postpone the examination until the spread of the COVID-19 was brought under control.
The chorus for postponing the various examinations, including NEET and JEE, grew louder on Sunday with over 4,000 students observing a day-long hunger strike to press for the demand in view of the rising COVID-19 cases.
The protest came on a day Gandhi said the government must listen to the 'mann ki baat' of students and arrive at "an acceptable solution" and his party demanded that the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) and the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) be deferred.
According to the leftist All India Students Association (AISA), over 4,200 students observed the day-long hunger strike at their respective home demanding that CBSE compartment exams of Classes 10 and 12 be cancelled and entrance exams such as the UGC-NET, CLAT, NEET and JEE be postponed.
Aspirants appear in the JEE for admission into the premier engineering colleges and the NEET for undergraduate medical courses.
The JEE (Main) is scheduled to be held between September 1 and 6, while the JEE (Advanced) on September 27. The NEET will be held on September 13.