Students at exam centres brave power cuts

KARACHI, May 23(Dawn): Thousands of boys and girls appearing in the Class IX exams braved sweltering heat and frequent power breakdowns at a number of examination centres in the city.

Some 58,100 boys and 45,200 girls, enrolled for the SSC-I (Science Group), appeared for the English paper on Tuesday while 40,000 students of general group will appear in the exam on Wednesday.

When thousands of teenagers reached their centres located in different parts of the city, they found the examination rooms terribly hot. As they finally settled down to take exams most of them had already their minds swirling because of heat.

The Karachi Electric Supply Corporation stuck to its past tradition and added to the ordeal of the students with power breakdowns.

A survey of examination centres showed that most of them lacked basic facilities. Even if there was no load-shedding, students - both boys and girls - found them sweating at the examination rooms in the absence of fans.

"I could not even study at home because of power outages and appearing in examinations in such conditions is just like a nightmare," Masooma Latif, a student said.

Many students said they could not take a final look at their books due to power breakdowns in the city.

Meanwhile, the Board of Secondary Education notified four special teams and 75 vigilance teams to monitor the exams. According to the board officials, none of the office-bearers of any teachers' association has been included in the vigilance teams to make the exercise more transparent and pressure-free.

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