Deccan Chronicle

4 JNTU-H students test positive for Covid-19


At a time when there is strident opposition to the conduct of exams and concerns over reopening of schools and colleges during the pandemic, at least four students of the JNTU-H affiliated CMR College of Engineerin­g and Technology (Autonomous), testing Covid-19 positive on Friday have heightened fears further.

A source told Deccan Chronicle that students who had appeared for the exams physically at the college from September 3 to 5, had stated on the college WhatsApp group that they had tested positive and that anyone who had come in contact should get themselves tested too.

CMR Engineerin­g

College Principal Major

Dr V.A. Narayana (retd), who is part of the group, told the students to “Stop sending the messages on testing positive (on group). The students who tested positive may directly call your friends and inform.” He changed the group’s settings to allow only admins to send messages.

He further added, “I came to know that few students have kept this as status stating that five CMR students tested positive. Please stop and also request if someone has kept it as status, then tell them to remove it immediatel­y (sic).”

Students who are a part of the group expressed shock over the communicat­ion.

A student said, “It is the responsibi­lity of those who tested positive to inform others who they may have come in contact with during the exams. We did not expect such a response from the principal.”

While it cannot be ascertaine­d whether the students tested positive because they appeared for exams — they confirmed to Deccan Chronicle that safety measures inside and outside the exam hall were implemente­d well — it has raised concerns over the risks that students are being exposed to, especially after reports of violations of safety guidelines during the JEE (Mains) in the state.

This correspond­ent called Principal Dr. Narayana for his comments. He cut the call saying, “I will not respond to your questions and it is wrong to say students contracted the infection after the exams.”

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