With over 2,20,000 aspirants having registered for 133 courses across the undergraduate, postgraduate, MPhil and PhD levels, the Delhi University Entrance Test (DUET) kicked off on Sunday.
The tests are being held at 24 centres across the country, and exams for admissions to 37 different courses were held on Sunday — including MA English, MA Political Science, MSc Computer Science, MCom, and PhD in Law.
DUET is conducted by the National Testing Agency (NTA). While the NTA could not be contacted to confirm how many of the registered candidates had appeared for Sunday’s examination, DU’s Dean Admission Shobha Bagai said the turnout appeared to be good.
“I do not have the complete data from the NTA, but it appears that the turnout in centres in Delhi was good. The turnout was comparatively lower in regions outside Delhi, but maybe that was expected, as many candidates might prefer admissions in their state universities,” she said.
At the centres in Delhi, candidates had travelled long distances through various means to reach their exam venue on time.
Murari Lal, whose sister appeared for her exam at a centre in Okhla, had made an arrangement with a friend who is an autorickshaw driver. “We have come from Geeta Colony, which is very far from here. Since there is no safe public transport option, I made an arrangement with my friend, who charged a discounted rate of Rs 200 to bring us here. He has gone back, and will return once the exam is over to take us home,” he said.
At the Okhla centre, the early afternoon exam shift had 200 candidates allotted for the venue. As candidates lined up to the enter the venue, they were asked to remove the masks they were wearing and were handed fresh 3-ply masks to wear at the centre. Their temperature was checked at the entrance, and they left their bags with their guardians and companions who waited outside.
At another centre in Kalkaji, Sarika Bhatt had travelled for her MA Sociology entrance test from Burari — over 30 km away.
“I just took an Uber even though it cost me quite a bit. I don’t think the exam should have been pushed back further. It’s better to get it done with, so we can be sure of where we will be going,” she said.
Among other precautions taken at the venues were sanitising between each of the three exam shifts, minimal physical contact while frisking and allowing applicants to carry their own water bottles and hand sanitisers.