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The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Saturday submitted a Zero Hour notice for Sunday in the Rajya Sabha, urging the government to reconsider it’s decision of scheduling UGC NET exams during Durga Puja. The TMC questions why these exams are being held on the auspicious days of Panchami, Shashti and Saptami during this festive season.

In this year’s monsoon session of the Parliament, Question Hour has been cancelled as the session was shortened to just 18 days amid the coronavirus pandemic. The precautions also include staggered sittings in both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha to avoid overcrowding.

While zero hour has been cut down to half, this is the only way the Opposition can question the government on pressing issues. TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee in a tweet spoke about the issue of exams being scheduled on the important days of the upcoming Durga Puja.

“.@narendramodi Ji’s blatant disrespect for the students and culture of Bengal is out in the open! What a ridiculous decision by @DG_NTA to schedule UGC NET exams on the auspicious days of Panchami, Shashti & Saptami, this Durga Puja,” read the tweet.

Attached with the tweet was a screenshot of the exam schedule. While Education and Geography have been scheduled for the 21st of October, language exams like Bengali are on the next day, the 22nd of October. Hindi is on the 23rd of October.

TMC MP Derek Obrien retweeted the post asking, “Are you surprised?”

This was a way of hitting out at the BJP led government on yet another issue. Opposition parties had also lashed out at the Centre for holding NEET and JEE (Main) exams amidst the coronavirus pandemic where candidates and their guardians might be at risk due to travelling amidst the pandemic.

The West Bengal government has been assuring people that Durga Puja celebrations will be held, giving way to much need relief post the lockdown. The NEET exams however mean that the government will have to ensure adequate safety and transport measures for candidates while there will also undertake the massive task of handling the crowd amidst Durga Puja.

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Free Press Journal