Pakistan

SRINAGAR – More than 100,000 students are taking exams in Indian-occupied Kashmir despite not being able to attend school for nearly four months due to curfew and protest across the valley.

But the government says this will not disadvantage students as they will be tested on only half the syllabus.

The government has also promised to hold another round of exams in March for the remaining 2% of students who have opted not to sit them this time.

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Over one lakh students are scheduled to take secondary school exams beginning in Kashmir on Monday following adequate security arrangements in the valley, education officials said.

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“One lakh five hundred students are taking these exams,” Zahoor Ahmad Chatt, chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Board of School Education (BOSE) told IANS.

“Over 45,000 students are appearing for class 12th exams beginning at 11am at 484 centres.

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“While over 55,000 students are appearing for class 10th exams, which begin here tomorrow (Tuesday).”

The chairman added 98 per cent of registered students are taking the exam amid tight security.

Calls were also made to delay exams after dozens of schools were burned by unknown attackers in recent weeks.

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Schools have been shut since July following clashes between security forces and protesters after the death of popular freedom fighter, Burhan Wani, who was killed in a gun battle with security forces.

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The continuing unrest in Indian-administered Kashmir has seen the deaths of over 100 civilians with thousands injured since July.

Both India and Pakistan claim Kashmir in its entirety but only control parts of it.

The region has been a flashpoint for more than 60 years, sparking two wars between the countries.

Within the Muslim-majority territory, some pro-freedom groups have taken up arms to fight for independence from Indian rule or a merger with Pakistan.