Mumbai: Now, medical students demand alternative methods to appear for offline exams starting from April 19

Following the postponement of major Class 10 Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Class Class 12 Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) board examinations, medical students have appealed to the Maharashtra University of Health Sciences (MUHS), Nashik demanding postponement and alternative methods for conduct of final exams of second and third year. The exams are scheduled to begin offline from April 19, as per schedule released by MUHS which governs all medical and dental colleges in Maharashtra.

If the state government can postpone major SSC and HSC board exams which involves over 30 lakh students from Maharashtra, the state can defer medical exams too, said students of second and third year medical Undergraduate (UG) programmes. Naina Urjiwala, a second year medical student said, "Our exams can be conducted at a later date when the Covid-19 situation is under control. Appearing for offline exams is a huge risk considering the daily rise in Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra."

On one side, the state government is imposing new restrictions to avoid crowding but on the other, medical students are being compelled to appear for offline exams, said Kasim Abbas, a third year medical student. Abbas said, "If the state is postponing other major offline examinations to avoid crowding, MUHS should reschedule or find an alternative way to conduct our exams to tackle spread of Covid-19 infection."

The medical examinations which were originally scheduled to take place in February were postponed to March and then to April by MUHS due to the rise in Covid-19 cases and complaints raised by students.

Postponement of offline medical exams is not the solution, said Sudha Shenoy, the representative of the medical parents' association. Shenoy said, "The second and third year medical exams are minor examinations compared to first and final year. These exams should be taken via online mode or any other alternative method instead of postponing the exams. Postponement of exams will only delay the academic year and add to stress of students."

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