Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], September 25 (ANI): The Left government in Kerala has allowed nine Class 12 students to write their improvement exams after sunset on religious grounds acting on a request from Seventh-Day Adventist Church.
The students, belonging to the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, will give their state board improvement exams after sunset on Saturday, after the end of Sabbath.
The Director of Public Instruction issued an order regarding the same on a request made by the Christian Protestant Church to the Chief Minister and Education Minister to reschedule the improvement exams timing.
The church had sent a memorandum seeking to reschedule the exam in view of the weekly Holy Sabbath from Friday evening to Saturday evening.
"We humbly request you to reschedule the timetable for plus two exams on any other day other than Saturday or after the sunset on Saturday. The Seventh-day Adventist Church universally observes the Holy Sabbath from Friday evening to Saturday evening weekly in thousands of churches across the World," the church said in its memorandum.
It said that all their plus two students and their parents were shocked to seek that important subjects such as Mathematics, Biology and Computer Science are scheduled on September 26 morning and evening.
"All the families connected with the Seventh-day Adventists families and Pastors are on a shock wave and immediately through church authorities presented the memorandum to Chief Minister, Education Minister and Education Department," it said.
Acting on the request, an order was issued by the DPI saying that the nine students of Seventh-day Adventist Church will be allowed to write the morning mathematics exam after 6 pm.
"The students have to come to the exam centre at Kollam before 9:30 am and they have to wait till 6 pm in a specially arranged room. They won't be allowed to use mobile phones or any other electronic gadgets. They can write exams after 6 pm," the order said.
Speaking to ANI, pastor Tito Arattukulam of Seventh-day Adventist Church welcomed the state government's decision and said that it should be replicated across the country.
"For those in the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Sabbath starts from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset. It's our holiday and we don't indulge in any work other than prayers. We are happy that the Kerala government took a favourable decision after a memorandum was given to Kerala Chief Minister and Education Minister," he said. (ANI)