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     A tough examination system ?

Chandigarh, December 6th 2005: Punjab Engineering College (PEC) received a first jerky reaction to the new and tougher examination system, implemented in this session. A second year student of electrical engineering, Yuvraj Agnihotri, said to be under severe depression after he was unable to qualify one of the exams held on Saturday (the marked answersheets of which were handed over today), had to be rushed to the PGI when fellow students noticed that he had fainted in Himalaya Hostel, where he was residing.

While students alleged that driven by the ‘‘extremely grilling’’ new examination system Yuvraj tried to commit suicide by hanging himself in his college cubicle, Director PEC Prof Vijay Gupta remained non-committal on the suicide part but agreed that the depressed student had to be hospitalised after he failed in one of the exams. The incident took place at around 3 pm and the DSW Prof K.K. Garg accompanied the students to PGI, from where he was discharged after some time.

‘‘I have heard both the versions, of the boy committing suicide and simply fainting in his room. We will investigate into what happened,’’ said Prof Gupta while talking to Newsline but defended the new system introduced on the lines of one followed in the IITs and said that as of now the system would continue. ‘‘In any good engineering institute, including the IITs, the students are made to work very hard and PEC is no exception. As of now we are continuing with the new system,’’ he added.

In a drastic shift this year, PEC, after becoming a deemed university, had decided to conduct six papers in the final semester exams, in six days, without any day off in between. Moreover, the question papers are set by the teachers at PEC and are marked by them. The marked answersheets are shown after four days of the exam and students’ comments are sought for review. Also, if a student fails in any of the exams, he has to repeat an entire year.

While authorities refuse to single out examination load behind Yuvraj’s condition, other students clearly blamed the new system. ‘‘The students are under a lot of stress in the new system as we have six exams in six days without any break and the results of these exams were given out during the exams. Yuvraj was depressed as he was a good student who was earlier doing very well in his studies,’’ said a second year student. Another student added,‘‘When the college was affiliated to Panjab University, six papers were conducted within a span of two weeks, with an average of one to two days break between each exam. But this time, we have continuous exams without any break and the syllabi are exhaustive, which is leading to depression and stress.’’

PEC Registrar who is from the electrical engineering department confirmed, ‘‘Yes, Yuvraj did not qualify in one of the papers and he had already written his comments on the answersheet submitted with the examiner. We have already told students that the initial results handed out to them are subject to changes based on their comments.’’

 | Original Source of News

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