Graduates wait to travel for PE exam

Phuentsholing has been under lockdown since April 17

University graduate students, who are stranded in Phuentsholing, are waiting to be quarantined so that they could travel to Thimphu to appear for the Preliminary Examination (PE) which is scheduled on August 15 this year. 

Meanwhile, Phuentsholing is still under lockdown since April 17 and the second round of mass vaccination is currently underway in the town.

Phuentsholing alone witnessed 538 positive cases of the Covid-19 till July 22 of this year. The longest lockdown in the country in Phuentsholing was obvious as the town continued to see community cases despite being under a lockdown for more than 90 days.

Meanwhile, some of the university graduates, who were in Phuentsholing and Samtse, are already under quarantine. However, more than 60 graduates are still stuck in Phuentsholing and Samtse despite the registration for escort and the examination scheduled next month.

Sources say that the quarantine facilities are already packed and that graduate students could not be accommodated. However, officials from the Southern Covid19 Task Force and the Royal Civil Service Commission (RCSC) are working on it.

With the lockdown extension, graduates who are in Phuentsholing are worried.

As they have to be under a 14-day quarantine, they say these 14 days should be before August 15.

A few told Business Bhutan that many had requested the Southern Covid19 Task Force to arrange a next escort as soon as possible as the examination date nears. 

A university graduate, Sonam Tshering said the Southern Covid19 Task Force should arrange the next escort soon for those who are going to appear for the exam if not we will miss the examination date. 

He said even the RCSC officials were contacted about the Phuentsholing’s situation and how graduates are stuck here.

Another graduate, Kinley said, “I think there will be an escort after the vaccination campaign. However, we don’t want to get late for the examination as quarantine days have also been extended to 14 days.”

Graduates who are stuck in Phuentsholing are hoping that they would be given quarantine service soon or the examination date would be postponed to a later date. 

A graduate, Sonam said it would be grateful if the RCSC could postpone the PE exam like last year as there are some students who are still stuck in India. 

“Besides myself, my friends are also stuck in Phuentsholing and we are hoping that there will be an escort soon.”

According to the officials from the Royal Civil Service Commission (RCSC), the decision will be made soon upon getting anything from Southern Covid19 Task Force with their views on the students stranded in Phuentsholing and Samtse.

Sonam Tashi from Phuentsholing