The Supreme Court of India has responded to a plea challenging the University Grants Commission’s directive to hold university final year exams in the country. The plea was filed by 31 students from across India seeking the cancellation of exams amid the pandemic outbreak. The petition would now be taken after two days. It was listed today for hearing before the two-judge bench including Justice L Nageswara Rao and Hemant Gupta.
The students who hailed from 13 states and one union territory have demanded the cancellation of the University final year exams to be conducted before September 30, 2020. The circular regarding the conduct of exams was published on July 6, 2020. One of the 31 petitioners has been tested COVID-19 positive. The petitioners thus urged that the scheduled exams across the country be cancelled in the interest of justice, as the number of corona infected patients are on the rise.
The petition sought to release the results based on an internal assessment or past performance. It has also asked the institutes to issue the mark sheets before July 31, 2020. The plea asked to court to issue directions to UGC to adopt the CBSE model and conduct exams later when the conditions are feasible for the students who are not satisfied with the marks awarded to them.
“Out of 818 universities, 603 universities have either conducted the examinations or planning to conduct them,” said University Grants Commission after receiving responses from universities regarding conducting of the terminal semester/final year examinations.
UGC in response to the petition said, “Students shouldn’t panic. We are working on the case and will be analysing NSUI petition. We will be prepared to counter it as both the matters are different. We are confident of getting justice.”
In the case of 27 private universities which were established from 2019-2020, the first batch is yet to become eligible for the final exams as informed by the Commission.
Earlier the Aditya Thackeray-led Yuva Sena had also approached the Apex Court to quash the UGC guidelines. The Yuva Sena had said that the current condition in India is only deteriorating especially Maharashtra due to the COVID-19 crisis. In this light, the time is not conducive to conduct examinations.