Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: Following Council of Higher Secondary Education’s (CHSE) announcement with regard to implementation of qualifying marks in Plus-II first year examination from this year, flames of protest erupted across Odisha colleges with students hitting streets demanding the Board to revoke the decision.

The Board had mentioned that if a student fails in the first year exams, s/he will not be promoted to the second year. The students will have to qualify with 33 per cent marks in the examination.

However, the announcement coming just a month before the exams has triggered massive protests across the State as students have demanded the Board to immediately revoke the decision to not allow them to jump into the second year if they fail to secure 33% marks in the first year exams.

Students of Biju Patnaik College, Maharshi College, Deb Ray College, Rajdhani College, Ekamra College staged dharna protesting CHSE's sudden decision stating that courses are yet to be covered. Either we should be given sufficient time for preparations or the Board should implement the move from next year onwards, demanded the irate students.

In response, School and Mass Education minister Samir Ranjan Das said, "There is no need to panic. Odisha government's intention is not to fail students in the first year exams of Plus-II. Like every year, the examination will be held in the first year, but it will be conducted in a more organised manner from this year."

As per CHSE, in case a student fails to clear the exams with the required percentage, the Board will give another chance to clear the backlogs. “Students will have another chance to clear their backlogs if any. If someone fails in the first examination from February 15 to 29, remedial classes would be conducted for them and the second clearance exam will be held in May-end,” the minister had earlier clarified.

It is pertinent to mention that so far first-year examination was considered a mock test wherein a student had to just appear in the examination to be considered qualified to jump to the second year.