Dhaka University authorities have decided to hold all ongoing and previously announced exams of its seven affiliated colleges in the wake of student protests.
The decision came at an emergency virtual meeting between Education Minister Dipu Moni and the university authorities yesterday afternoon.
Meanwhile, demonstrations by students blocking the city's Nilkhet intersection caused sufferings to commuters as they had to endure long tailbacks on streets throughout the day.
Traffic was badly disrupted on Mirpur Road and Elephant Road, and also on streets in Shahbagh, Bangshal, Nayabazar and some other adjacent areas.
Many people had to walk to their destinations after getting off vehicles.
Students of the seven colleges staged demonstrations for the last two days demanding the authorities hold their ongoing and previously announced exams and reopen their educational institutions and dormitories.
An education ministry statement yesterday said the DU authorities would hold all ongoing and previously announced examinations of its seven affiliated colleges under certain conditions.
Education Minister Dipu Moni said the exams would be held maintaining Covid-19 health guidelines and the college dormitories would not be opened during the exams.
Dhaka College Principal IK Selim Ullah Khondaker, also the coordinator of the seven colleges, who was present at the meeting, said they would inform the students about the matter.
Earlier on Tuesday evening, the DU authorities in a meeting with the college principals had decided to postpone the exams. The decision came a day after the education minister announced that all universities would reopen on May 24 after the Eid-ul-Fitr.
No examinations will be held before reopening of the universities, but online classes will continue, Dipu Moni added.
Frustrated by the decision, a group of students blocked Nilkhet intersection and some other roads near the DU campus that evening, demanding continuation of their ongoing exams.
Yesterday, students once again gathered at the intersection around 9:00am and blocked roads, halting traffic in New Market area.
Around noon, another group of students blocked Science Laboratory intersection. They continued their protests till around 4:00pm. The protesters left the place after hearing about the latest announcement of the education ministry.
During demonstrations, students alleged that the session jam situation worsened following the affiliation of their colleges to the DU. They expressed concern that the situation would deteriorate further if the ongoing exams were deferred.
Mohammad Lincoln, a fourth-year honours student of Dhaka College, said he needed to take only one more exam, and the DU authorities were considering postponing the exams.
"Halls are closed amid the pandemic and we were taking exams staying at messes. If the exams are postponed, we have to stay at messes for the next three months spending extra money," he said.
Mentioning that financial condition of all students are not the same, he demanded the authorities meet their demand.
Assistant Commissioner (Lalbagh zone) of Dhaka Metropolitan Police Sanwar Hossain yesterday said they requested the agitating students to free the streets but in vain.
In 2017, the seven colleges -- Dhaka College, Eden Mohila College, Government Shaheed Suhrawardy College, Kabi Nazrul Government College, Begum Badrunnesa Government Mohila College, Mirpur Government Bangla College, and Government Titumir College -- were brought under DU from National University with the aim to increase the quality of education and reduce session jam.