Testing grounds lie deserted amid standoff over government driving instructors in Kerala

Thiruvananthapuram: “Everything has stopped. No one comes here to take training or take driving tests. See the deserted land? I don’t know when it will start again,” says a driving instructor in Kudappanakkunnu. The amendments made in the driving test format have left driving instructors and students in a state of uncertainty. Despite Transport Minister KB Ganesh Kumar’s directive to resume driving tests on Friday, the testing grounds at Kudappankunnu as well as other places are largely empty. Driving instructors are frustrated by the lack of clarity and uniformity in the new rules. One instructor said, “We want our students to pass, but with constant changes, it is becoming challenging to adequately prepare them for the exams.” Meanwhile, learners who were eagerly waiting for their turn to take the driving test now find themselves caught in the crossfire. “I have been practicing for months, and just when I thought I was ready to take the exam, the controversy started,” said a student, requesting anonymity. “I did not receive any information regarding resumption of activities. My driving school told me everything was closed. Now there is confusion about the procedures,” said Chandana Chandran, a Plus-II student. While the minister had initially given permission to conduct only 30 tests per day, he had to increase the number to 60 due to pressure from driving schools. However, confusion still remains among the participants. As per Ganesh’s instructions, the revised format was to be implemented from May 10. statewide standoff Although the indefinite strike was temporarily called off after Minister KB Ganesh Kumar agreed to relax the rules, the driving schools are continuing their protest demanding further amendments.

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