Published: 22nd August 2022
#jntuhsubjectexemption: Students protest after JNTUH does away with grace marks for R18 batch
JNTUH earlier had provided the benefit of awarding grace marks and granting subject exemption to those students of batches R05, R07, R09, R13, R15, R16
Students of the Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Hyderabad (JNTUH) and students associations protested on the campus in support of the R18 BTech batch as the administration has decided to do away with the awarding of grace marks and granting subject exemption to their batch.
JNTUH had earlier provided the benefits of awarding grace marks to those students of batches R05, R07, R09, R13, R15, R16, who were falling short of a few marks to pass one or two subjects. By adding specified grace marks, these students would be able to pass these one or two subjects and secure sufficient credits to obtain their provisional degree certificate.
Additionally, if a student acquires sufficient credits for the issue of provisional certificate as per their academic regulations, and fails in one or two subjects, then the student can forgo the performance in these failed subjects and can apply for the issue of provisional certificate. However, the same benefits were not mentioned in the official academic regulatory paper for the R18 batch.
Venkat Balmoor, President of National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) Telangana said that the administration has cited that the students were already informed last year that this provision would be removed. “But this should be informed on the date of joining in 2018 and not in 2021. If they want to make any changes, they must do it at the beginning of the academic session,” he said.
How will this affect students?
Around 1,200-1,600 students need only five marks to pass in one subject and they have already applied for their master's abroad, said Balmoor. “If at the last moment they don’t grant exemption, then students will lose out on one year,” he added. As a result, their prime demand is to grant grace marks as it is a system that has been followed for many years, he said.
Students also took to Twitter with the hashtag #jntuhsubjectexemption to draw attention to their demands. “Many of R18 students have less internal marks and thousands of students are facing problems with two-three backlogs. Please provide exemption for R18 regulations students (BTech). If not then many students will waste year. They also suffered from pandemic so take concern and provide exemption,” said Saiankenapally in a post on Twitter.
Some students said that they joined the institute as subject exemption and grace marks were given as perks. “One of the key reasons I joined JNTUH is that they provide subject exemption and grace marks. This is a nightmare for R18 students that they are not getting this facility this year,” said Syed Muzzamil Ali, a student on Twitter.
The R18 batch also had to face the repercussions of the COVID-19 induced restrictions including online learning. “JNTUH R18 batch needs subject exemption. Due to the pandemic, we haven’t had classes properly. So we need subject exemption option,” said Shiva Raj in a post on Twitter.
Additionally, the Twitter handle @examupdt with more than 36,900 followers and is known for sharing frequent updates regarding JNTUH on the social media platform shared a video in which a student said that they need grace marks and subject exemption and require support for their demands from the administration.
Why the change in rules now?
When EdexLive reached out to a JNTUH official, he claimed that the regulations were not introduced this year. “The revised regulations were informed at the time of admission in 2018 itself and it is not that it was done suddenly,” he said.
“Students can’t just come suddenly now and ask why grace marks have not been given,” he said. Some changes have been made and they need to be implemented, the official added.
The NSUI had earlier submitted a representation to Dr Banoth Dharma Naika, Officer on Special Duty to the Vice-Chancellor of JNTUH demanding to provide subject exemption and grace marks to the R18 batch. They had also given a deadline of August 21, after which they said that they would protest on campus.
As the students protested today, August 22, Balmoor said that the police launched a lathi-charge on them. “We only wanted to speak to the administration. But the police resorted to violence which was absolutely unnecessary,” he said.