Published: 08th August 2020
No COMEDK exams this year for COVID positive students: Dr S Kumar
Unlike last year, the number of students registered for the COMEDK exams this year is comparatively low and Dr S Kumar says that he can't predict the percentage of attendance due to the pandemic
If you have tested positive for COVID, then you will not be able to take the COMEDK exam this year. After the Government of Karnataka conducted KCET exams on July 30 and 31 and claims to have accomplished it successfully, the COMEDK exams will be conducted on August 19 across India. These exams which usually happen on the second Sunday of May were postponed this year due to the pandemic on August 1 and now August 19.
COMEDK exams will be held in two different shifts on this day. While one shift will be from 9 am to 12 pm, another shift will be from 2.30 pm to 5.30 pm. This entrance exam is another pathway for students to secure better rankings and make it to dental and engineering institutions. COMEDK exam will compromise 180 questions from all the three subjects — Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and there will be no negative marking.
Edexlive reached out to Dr S Kumar, Executive Secretary of COMEDK who has been into teaching stream for more than 40 years to ask several questions that can clear the students' doubts. Excerpts:
Many students want their exams to be postponed amidst this pandemic. What is your opinion about this? Why not postpone the COMEDK exams?
Having been in the teaching field for more than 40 years, students always want their exams to be postponed and they don't realise their short term vision is going to impact them in the long run — a nil year. Authorities of the VTU have already issued guidelines that the admission process must be completed in the first week of October. Students have to get admissions either through government or private exams and counselling. There is no cutoff date for this pandemic and it is going to remain with us at least for some duration. It might become epidemic from pandemic and by then if the immunity of the people levels up to fight the viruses. It is a matter of time and you can't afford to cancel or postpone the exams.
In fact, we got a call from a person asking that even if you take precautions and a student gets infected in the exam centre, will you bear my expenses? These are the kind of unfortunate and misguided statements we get to hear. The students will know the value of an academic year only when their contemporary goes up the ladder and they get stuck somewhere.
Dr S Kumar, Executive Secretary, COMEDK
What safety measures are going to be in place during the COMEDK exam day?
Safety measures like physical distancing will be ensured. We have given different timeslots for students so that everybody doesn't rush to the exam centre. We have banned the biometric system and capturing only photos. there will be a thermal screening at the entrance, invigilators will be provided with the face shields, masks and gloves. The phones of students will be collected at a particular counter and a coupon will be given to them. If the invigilators will have to take the student's signature, they will be given sanitiser to clean their hands before and after signing. All these do's and dont's are printed on the hall ticket and published clearly on our website.
Will you be allowing COVID positive students to write the exams?
No, Initially we thought of allowing them to write exams. The KCET exams that the state government conducted was within the state but this exam is going to be across India. If the student is allotted centre A and on the day of exam, if the student is found to be COVID positive, then it is going to be huge trouble to travel to centre Y which is a dedicated COVID centre and if it is on the outskirts of the city, then it is not feasible to travel.
How many students have registered for the exam and how much percentage of attendance do you expect?
This year 61,400 students have registered for the exam. It is less when compared to the students registered last year which was 70,000 and every year, there will be at least 85 per cent of attendance that we record. But this time, we can't predict as it may vary due to the pandemic
We have also increased the number of exam centres from 260 to 380. We have ensured to allocate the centre they asked for. For instance, before the pandemic, students who were attending coaching for various exams in Kota. Now, they would have been living in their home town. For such students who made this request, we have allocated an exam centre in their home town. Similarly, the online process will be also carried out online.
One can check their website comedk.org for more details and queries related to exam