On Wednesday, protesting against the alleged irregularities in Railway Recruitment Board’s (RRB) exams, thousands of angry students clashed with the police after they set a stationary, empty train compartment on fire in Gaya.
The agitating students also went on tracks and blocked the passage of Shramjeevi Express and pelted stones at a moving train at the Gaya railway station. Carrying out baton-charge and firing shots in the air to disperse the protesters, the Police said that students should not get influenced and should not damage govt property. Visuals have also emerged showing the job aspirants removing railway tracks to prevent the movement of trains.
Gaya, Bihar | Aspirants vandalized train over alleged irregularities in Railway exam— ANI (@ANI) January 26, 2022
CBT 2 exam date was not notified; no update on Railway exam which was notified in 2019…Result is still awaited…We demand cancellation of CBT 2 exam & release of exam result: Protester pic.twitter.com/9eyW8JphYa
SSP Gaya, Aditya Kumar informed that the police had identified a few students directly involved in the act and that legal action will be taken. He also informed that the government had formed a committee to look into the matter.
The students are protesting for the past three days complaining about the alleged irregularities of the Railway Recruitment Board’s (RRB) Non-Technical Popular Categories (NTPC) competitive examinations. They said on Wednesday that the government was not issuing updates about the Railway exam notified in 2019 and that there were no updates on the previously held exam results. The students have demanded immediate cancellation of exams and release of exam results held before 2019.
In the interim, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has extended support to the protesters and has said that these students are the ‘hope’ of the country. “I am against the policies of the BJP government and will be with you in favor of truth but violence is not our way. If you can take freedom from non-violent protest then why not your right?”, he tweeted.
#Students, आप देश की व अपने परिवार की उम्मीद हैं।— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) January 26, 2022
भाजपा सरकार की नीतियों के ख़िलाफ़, सत्य के पक्ष में मैं आपके साथ हूँ और रहूँगा लेकिन हिंसा हमारा रास्ता नहीं है।
अहिंसक विरोध से स्वतंत्रता ले सकते हैं तो अपना अधिकार क्यों नहीं? #NoFear #NoViolence
Railway forms High Power committee-
The protests continued even as the Railways today announced that the NTPC and Level 1 exams would be suspended after such severe protests. Further to hear out the grievances, the Railways also formed a high power committee. With this, the Railways said that the candidates are being given an opportunity to lodge their concerns and suggestions to the committee.
Lifetime debarment of students involved in vandalism-
On January 25, Railways also issued a public notice against the students involved in vandalism and unlawful activities and said that they might face lifetime debarment. The serious leaflet comes exactly a day after the students held major protests in Patna and other cities of Bihar. Reports mention that the students tried to disrupt the rail services in the city.
Railway constitutes High Power Committee to look into Concerns of Candidates over NTPC CBT-1 Result.— Ministry of Railways (@RailMinIndia) January 26, 2022
Candidates may submit their Grievances to Committee till 16th February, 2022https://t.co/6zNKijDA7q pic.twitter.com/7gAmAOUhFY
Train torched in Arrah; Action initiated against the culprits
The incident of a train set on fire in Gaya lines second in the row as the protesting candidates had torched a passenger train in Arrah, Bihar yesterday and also pelted stones at the train. The videos of the episode went viral on the social media hamperinRailway Recruitment Boardg the rail service for nearly about five hours.
Bihar: Students protesting against alleged irregularities in Railway Recruitment Board’s exam allegedly set a passenger train on fire and pelted stones on police in Arrah— ANI (@ANI) January 25, 2022
“Videos have been shot and the accused protestors will be arrested after an investigation,” says an official pic.twitter.com/NTRydarCJQ
The protesters had also laid down on the railway tracks threatening to kill themselves amid the alleged exam schedules mess. The police fired tear gas shells and used water cannons to disperse students protesting and moved the protesters out of the railway stations. The police said they have initiated the primary action against the culprits.
According to the reports, the RRB had released the exam dates for the Computer-Based Test (CBT 2) 2019. The second stage CBT was scheduled to be held in a single phase from February 15 to February 19, 2022. However, with the exam being under scrutiny, it is expected that the CBT 2 might get postponed.