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Students Blast NSUI for Hijacking Protests on CBSE Paper Leak, Making Unilateral Demands

CBSE students protest over the paper leak at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on Thursday. (Image: PTI)

CBSE students protest over the paper leak at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on Thursday. (Image: PTI)

The CBSE had on Wednesday announced that it would re-conduct the Class XII economics exam and the Class X Maths exam after they were leaked.

New Delhi: Day two of the protests against CBSE’s decision to hold re-exams after two papers were leaked saw a movement fractured and hijacked by college student unions.

A set of demands presented to the HRD minister Prakash Javadekar by four members of Congress’ student wing NSUI and a school student did not go down well with the other protestors. Their suggestion that all students unwilling to appear for a retest be given an average best score particularly riled the students.

“Why should I get the same average score as others?” asked an irate Ravinder, a class XII student from RP Vidyalaya. “Mark me according to how I’ve performed. Whether I’ve attempted questions worth 40 marks or 70 marks,” he said. “This isn't our demand. We heard it from others it when we got here,” said his companion, Yogesh, from the same school.

Ravinder and Yogesh, along with a group of their classmates, had come to central Delhi from Azadpur Mandi for the protest, only to run into a contingent led by the National Students Union of India.

The other demands of NSUI, along with Hamza Abbas, a class XII student from St. Columba’s School, included sacking of the CBSE chairperson. They also said that a retest date should only be set for those who want to write the exam today and the rest should be given an 'average best score’.

“I sort of organised the protest,” said Abbas, “and I went with the NSUI members because they were very nice.” The minister, he said, thought the idea of the average score was a good one.

The CBSE had on Wednesday announced that it would re-conduct the Class XII economics exam and the Class X Maths exam after they were leaked. Around 28 lakh students are affected by the move and many have taken to streets all across the country in protest, asking why they should be punished for someone else’s mistakes.

Ayush Kumar, a class XII student of Army Public School, who was also a part of the protests, said the demands placed before the HRD minister were not shared with them. “We don’t want this,” he said.

Though NSUI said they came up with their list after meeting and conferring with students, none of the students News18 spoke to were a part of the decision. Some of the students pointed out that NSUI wouldn't even talk to them when they tried.

“And why would we want the CBSE chair to be sacked,” said Ayush. “We don't care about the management of the body, only the functionality.”

“Where's the security for any of these papers,” asked these students. “Tomorrow”, pointed out Ayush, “the Joint Entrance Exam (for the IITs) could be leaked. How will the ministry’s security systems work then?” he asked.

“Our demands are the same as yesterday,” said Pankaj, from SRS Mission School, who protested all day at Jantar Mantar on Thursday and rallied his peers on WhatsApp to turn out on Friday. “Either cancel the re-test or redo the entire board examination.”

The other students too clamoured for the same.

“If the student unions are here to help us that's good,” added Pankaj, “but because of them, most of the other students who were here at the protest, left.”

For many school students this is the first time they’ve had to turn out against perceived injustice. Khushi Sodhi, who came with three other girls from St. Anthony's, said her parents made her go to fight for what she thinks is right.

first published:March 30, 2018, 16:45 IST