Govt to take decision within 2 days on class 12 board exams: AG tells SC

The authorities will take a ultimate decision within the subsequent two days on whether or not to conduct class 12 board exams amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the Supreme Court was knowledgeable on Monday.

Attorney General Ok Ok Venugopal informed this to a bench of Justices A M Khanwilkar and Dinesh Maheshwari which mentioned if the Centre decides to depart from the final year’s coverage, whereby the remaining board exams have been cancelled due to the pandemic, then it should give “tangible reasons” for it.

“No issue. You take the decision. You are entitled to it. If you are departing from the policy of last year, then you must give tangible reasons for it,” the bench informed Venugopal.

Observing that the final year’s decision was taken after deliberations, the apex courtroom mentioned, “If you are departing from that policy, please give us good reasons so that we can examine it.”

The bench was listening to a plea looking for instructions to cancel the class 12 exams of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and Council for the Indian School Certificate Examination (CISCE) amid the pandemic state of affairs.

The apex courtroom on June 26, 2020 had permitted the schemes of the CBSE and CISCE for cancellations of remaining board examinations scheduled from July 1 to 15 final year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and in addition permitted their method for evaluation of examinees.

During the listening to carried out by way of video-conferencing on Monday, the Attorney General informed the bench, “The government will take a final decision within the next two days. We are hoping that your lordships will give us time till Thursday (June 3) so that we can come back with the final decision”.

Venugopal mentioned that final year, board exams for some papers have been over earlier than the COVID-19 induced nationwide lockdown was imposed in March 2020.

(*2*) the bench noticed.

To this, Venugopal mentioned, “We will keep this in mind what you (bench) have said.”

The bench mentioned, “We have no difficulty. You take the decision on what should be appropriate given the situation we are in.”

During the listening to, petitioner Mamta Sharma raised the problem of issue which college students, who want to research overseas after class 12, may face in case the outcomes are delayed.

“Let them take the decision. Depending on that, we will see. We will consider this on Thursday when the in-principle decision is placed before us,” the bench mentioned.

“List on Thursday (June 3) as requested by the attorney general as the competent authority is examining all the aspects of the matter and is likely to take in-principle decision which will be placed before the court,” the bench mentioned.

On May 28, the apex courtroom had mentioned it might hear on May 31 the petition which has additionally sought instructions to devise an “objective methodology” to declare the results of class 12 within a particular timeframe.

The prime courtroom had permitted the petitioner to serve advance copy of the plea on the standing counsel for the respondents — central company, CBSE, ICSE — and in addition on the office of the Attorney General.

The petition has arrayed the Centre, the CBSE and the CISCE as respondents within the matter.

The CBSE had on April 14 introduced cancellation of class 10 exams and postponement of class 12 exams in view of the surge in coronavirus circumstances.

The Ministry of Education had not too long ago sought detailed ideas from the states and Union Territories until May 25 on the proposals mentioned in a high-level meeting held on the problem.

The CBSE had proposed conducting the exams between July 15-August 26 and the consequence to be declared in September.

The board had additionally proposed two choices: conducting common exams for 19 main topics at notified centres or conducting shorter length exams at respective colleges the place college students are enrolled.

The plea filed within the apex courtroom has contended that due to the unprecedented well being emergency and surge in COVID-19 circumstances within the nation, it isn’t attainable to conduct the examination and any additional delay would trigger irreparable loss to the way forward for college students.

“In view of the unprecedented health emergency and rising number of COVID-19 cases in the country, the conduct of examination (either offline/online/blended) in upcoming weeks is not possible and delay in examination will cause irreparable loss to the students as time is the essence in taking admission in higher education courses in foreign universities,” the plea mentioned.

It has additionally sought setting apart of the notifications, issued final months by the CBSE and the CISCE, solely in respect of the clauses coping with postponement of class 12 examinations.

The petition mentioned it’s the utmost responsibility of the state to take care of the well being and security of scholars and on the identical time, not to hamper their larger training and career prospects.

It mentioned the COVID-19 state of affairs is extra extreme compared to final year and the respondents ought to undertake the identical standards of assessing the grading/marks of class 12 college students as carried out final year.

It mentioned that the apex courtroom could train its plenary energy underneath Article 142 of the (*12*) to direct the respondents to implement the identical methodology as being adopted for class 10 to declare the consequence and cancel the class 12 examination. PTI ABA MNL SJK SA

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