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NET aspirants allege discrimination, demand exam centres within J&K.

Resentment among Kashmiri aspirants for National Eligibility Test is brewing against the recently created National Testing Agency for allotting them exam centres outside Jammu and Kashmir.

The NET exams are likely to be held on December 18 by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Few centres for the NET exams are provided in the state which has agitated the candidates who have been allotted centres outside the state, alleging it has been done to create hurdles for them.They say, despite choosing centres within J&K for taking the national level test they have been asked to appear in exam centres in far off states.

This year, the UGC established NTA as a premier, specialist, autonomous and self-sustained testing organisation to conduct entrance examinations for granting fellowships and admission in higher educational institutions

“The pathetic thing is that many students have their centres in Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Rajasthan and Punjab. It is discrimination with aspirants from Kashmir,” said Shakeel Ahmad, one of the aspirants.The candidates say they while applying for the test they prioritised exam centres in Baramulla and Srinagar districts and had given alternate option for Jammu and Kathua.

“But most of the students have their exam centres outside J&K state,” he said.The candidates were asked to download their admit cards from NTA website from November 19.

The aggrieved students say it was not possible for them to afford air tickets worth Rs 10,000 to Rs 15000 to travel to other states for the test.“The NET exam will commence from 3rd week of December, a period when National highway connecting Kashmir to Jammu often remains closed due to inclement weather. We can’t afford air tickets,” said Asim, a NET candidate.

The aspirants have appealed the Governor of J&K state and the advisor Khurshid Ahmad Ganai to personally intervene in the matter so that their exam centres are set up within the state.“Few days ago we approached advisor Khurshid Ahamd Ganai and director colleges with our representation but nothing has been done so far,” said a candidate.

Director higher education department, Zahoor Ahmad Chatt said the matter has been discussed with Ganai.

“He is likely to take up the matter with concerned authorities. Appropriate action will be taken very shortly,” Chatt said.

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