Supreme Court has finally elucidated the ambiguities among the lakhs of students and has delivered its final verdict in connection to the petitions moved challenging July 6 guidelines issued by UGC for holding the final year exams 2020 in September.
With upholding the University Grant Commission (UGC)’s decision to hold the final year exams, Supreme Court has directed all the varsities across the country to conduct the final year exams by September 30.
The three-judge bench comprising of Justice Ashok Bhushan, Justice R Subhash Reddy, and Justice MR Shah noted that it is mandatory to conduct the final year examinations in order to promote the students. However, it is not compulsory to conduct the examinations by September 30.
Top court has stated that states cannot promote the students without conducting examinations. The court has deferred the hearing on August 18 to also decide the power of states in the matter under the Disaster Management Act to defer the date of exams till the situation normalises.
“The decision of Maharashtra not to hold exams under the Disaster Management Act shall prevail,” said Supreme Court. Besides that the bench granted liberty to states to approach UGC for the extension of examination date.
Maharashtra and Delhi governments have decided to cancel the final year exams amid the increasing spread of pandemic COVID-19.
Last week, the state governments of Maharashtra, Delhi, West Bengal, and Odisha has approached the Supreme Court to defer the date of final year exams citing the reason that lives of lakhs of students could be jeopardized by holding the exams amid this pandemic situation.
On July 6, UGC has issued a circular stating that exams will be conducted either online, offline, or in blended mode. The top education regulator also stated that its decision not to scrap the final semester and final year exams is based on academic prudence and need for maintaining credibility.
In an affidavit filed earlier by University Grants Commission, the regulator body has told the court that the decision of Maharashtra and Delhi governments to cancel the exams will directly impact the standards of higher education in the country.
UGC also stated in the affidavit, “July 6 guidelines are based on recommendations of experts and have been made after due deliberation and it is wrong to claim that it will not be possible to conduct the final examinations in terms of the guidelines.”