No examinations will take place in the country until June 15, amid a surge in coronavirus cases and deaths. Federal education minister Shafqat Mehmood on Tuesday announced it.
Addressing a press conference in Islamabad, he said O and A level exams had been canceled. These exams would now take place in the October-November cycle. However, A2 exams will keep running for students who want to appear for the purpose of applying to foreign universities.
“It has been directed strictly that after Monday, more than 50 people will not be in one center. For that we have requested that schools be made venues,” said the minister. Mehmoodadded that law enforcement personnel will be deployed to maintain discipline.
In a tweet, Mehmood said the decision had been taken to address the “health concerns of students and parents.”
“All exams cancelled till June 15 and depending on the spread of the disease may even go further,” he wrote.
He said Cambridge exams had been postponed till Oct-Nov for all grades, while the only exception was for those A2 students “who have a compulsion to take [the] exam now.”
Govt under pressure to cancel exams
The decision comes amid pressure on the government from students, activists, politicians, and celebs to cancel the Cambridge exams.
Mehmood said since the last meeting at the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) on April 18, COVID cases have increased. The meeting that day had decided that exams would be held as per schedule.
Meanwhile, the NCOC has also decided to impose inter-provincial and inter-city travel ban during Eid holidays. According to a circular of the Interior Ministry, the NCOC decided to impose complete ban on tourism from May 8-16, including Eid holidays.
Pakistani Army is working in 16 major cities with civilian authorities in enforcing SOPs to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The army will also ensure the wearing of masks in public and the closing of non-essential businesses after 6pm.
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