Odisha, a state opposed to conducting NEET and JEE amid the pandemic, Friday announced free transportation and accommodation for students appearing for the entrances should they require it.
The transportation facility will include travel to and from the examination centres, around 26 of which have been set up across seven districts in the state. Additionally, the state will ensure hassle-free inter-district travel for candidates and their guardians who can make their own transport arrangements.
In view of the Covid-19 pandemic and the incessant rains which have led to floods in various parts of Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had Thursday called Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking postponement of the medical and engineering entrances. Earlier, Patnaik had also written to the Union Education minister on this issue.
Around 37,000 students in the state are expected to appear for the examinations. “Keeping the present scenario in mind, if any candidate is facing any issue in terms of accommodation and transportation, the state government will provide free of cost transportation and accommodation to the students who need it. We are determined to help the candidates while adhering to Covid-19 safety norms. For candidates who can arrange their own transportation, we will ensure hassle free inter-district movement for them,” Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy said.
In every district, one ITI has been designated as a nodal centre. “Candidates who need transportation and accomodation, can register themselves at the nodal ITI of the districts. On receiving the information, the respective district administrations will ensure their transportation to the exam centre and their return,” said Sanjay Singh, Principal Secretary, Skill Development and Technical Education Department.
An order has also been issued to engineering colleges, both private and government, to open their hostels and accommodate candidates and their guardians free of cost, Singh said. The nodal ITI centres at the seven districts have been given the task of charting out where the candidates will stay.
Earlier Friday, the Odisha Public Service Commission had announced the postponement of the Odisha Civil Services (Main) written examination to November owing to the pandemic. The exact date will be notified at a later time.
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