CHENNAI: Hundreds of candidates who arrived in the city on Sunday from across the State to attend various competitive examinations had a harrowing time, with no buses to reach their examinations centres. Several candidates found themselves with a light pocket by the time they reached their examination venues, thanks to fleecing auto drivers.
“I had come to the city from Katpadi to appear for the National Eligibility Test. After reaching Chennai Central, I waited for half an hour for a bus. I did not know about the bus strike then. But as time passed, there was no other option but to take an auto. The auto driver refused to switch on the meter and charged `100 for the 10 minutes ride,” says Saranya M, who had to come to the Ethiraj college for her NET examination.
The city had over 60,000 students writing the NET examination on Sunday.
Prabhu from Salem came to Loyola Institute of Technology, Palanchur in Chennai to take the exam for Post Master organised by the postal department for direct recruitment. “I reached CMBT at 8 am. I was told that I would reach Palanchur by 8.45 am. Because of this strike, I had to take four autorickshaws. I finally managed to reach the venue at 10.10 am. Fortunately, they let me take up the test without asking too many questions,” he said.
The Postal department’s examination saw 68,000 applications for the Chennai City region.
Meanwhile, several parents found themselves keeping aside their holidays to take their children for examinations. “Majority of the candidates here were dropped by their parents. I had to travel over 30 km by bike to reach the examination venue,” said G Srilatha, another NET candidate.
She suggested that during such emergencies the administration should have a plan B in place. “Some services like vans or tempo travellers could have been arranged to connect important points to the examination venue. Moreover there was no check on the auto drivers taking advantage of the situation,” she said.