Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank
Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank
@HRDMinistry Twitter

As per the public notices issued by NTA, JEE (Main) April 2020 is scheduled from September 1-6, while NEET-UG 2020 exam is scheduled for September 13.

However, as the date of the exam is coming closer, the outrage on social media for postponing the exams is increasing day by day.

Today Twitter came out with a new hashtag - #RIP_POKHRIYAL - to mark their protest. For those unversed, Dr. Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' is the Union Education Minister.

On August 27, the minister, against the backdrop of a growing chorus for postponement NEET and JEE, had said, "National Testing Agency (NTA) officials told me that over 7 lakh candidates have downloaded JEE-Main admit cards while over 10 lakh aspirants have downloaded NEET admit cards. This shows that students want the exams be held at any cost."

While the demands for postponing exams amidst the increasing COVID-19 cases and flood situation in the country can be understood, the hashtag is indeed derogatory. Twitter has been dominated by hashtags saying RIP to public figures, who are still very much alive. Such hashtags are used for marking a protest for a particular issue. In this case, Twitter, with this hashtag, is marking its protest against the decision of holding NEET and JEE in September.

Check out the reactions here:

Earlier on August 22, Twitter came up with #ResignNishankPokhriyal; demanding Union Education Minister to step down.

In the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, parents and students wanted the postponement of JEE and NEET, however, the Ministry of Education clarified that the competitive exams will be held in September as it was scheduled.

As the COVID-19 cases surged in the country, several pleas were filed in the Supreme Court against the notification of conducting JEE and NEET in September. On 17 August, the Supreme Court dismissed a plea seeking postponement of these exams. The top court has said that the year of students "cannot be wasted" and life has to go on.

The plea, filed by 11 students belonging to 11 states, had sought quashing of the July 3 notices issued by the National Testing Agency (NTA), by which it was decided to conduct the exams in September.

The plea, filed through advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, had referred to COVID-19 pandemic and said authorities be directed to conduct these exams only after normalcy is restored.

The plea had also alleged that authorities concerned have ignored the plight of lakhs of students from Bihar, Assam and northeastern states, which are presently reeling under flood, and conducting either online or offline exams in such places may not be possible.

(With inputs from agencies)

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