HC notice on plea against guidelines mandating final year exams

New Delhi, July 15 (IANS) The Delhi High Court has sought a response from the Centre and others on a petition challenging the University Grants Commission (UGC) guidelines mandating the conduct of exams for final year degree students by end September, via offline, online or a blended method, in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.

A single judge bench of Justice Jayant Nath issued notice on the petition filed by Kabir Sachdeva, a final year student of Delhi University, through advocate Manik Dogra, seeking promotion of final year students on the basis of average of marks obtained in previous years and internal assessment during the current year.

Dogra, on behalf of the petitioner, told the bench the UGC guidelines are ex-facie perverse, inasmuch as they demonstrate non-application of mind and colourable exercise of power.

He argued that the same would set an illegitimate expectation for the general public, leaving many facing a significant threat and thereby, placing undue weightage on academic importance in comparison to the lives of thousands of students and their kin.

The petitioner alleged that the Central government (HRD Ministry) and the UGC have repeatedly failed to consider the express concerns raised by the the students, but also have turned a deaf ear towards several teachers associations.

The plea noted that UGC’s former Chairman, Prof. Sukhadeo Thorat, and at least 28 other professors from institutes across the country, including the Delhi University, and the Jawaharlal Nehru University, have called for the final term exams to be cancelled and to adopt alternative methods of evaluation, including past performance of students.

–IANS
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