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SC questions admission system for ICSE students

The Supreme Court on Monday questioned why the state government differentiated among students of the ICSE Board while admitting them to junior colleges.

india Updated: Jul 13, 2010 01:31 IST
Bhadra Sinha

The Supreme Court on Monday questioned why the state government differentiated among students of the ICSE Board while admitting them to junior colleges.

The court was hearing arguments on the state’s Best-Five policy for admissions of SSC students to junior colleges.

Besides 16 lakh State Secondary Certificate (SSC) students, there are others who took the exams under the CBSE and ICSE board awaiting admission to junior colleges.

The state has to answer the query on Tuesday.

The query came from a bench headed by Justice V.S. Sirpurkar after it was told that the state board calculates the percentage of ICSE students based on all seven subjects if the student has passed in all seven subjects.

But if a student has failed in one or two subjects, then the other six or five subjects will be considered.

“How can you follow this formula? This would put the student who clears all seven subjects at a loss,” the court told senior counsel Harish Salve, appearing for the board.

Though Salve tried telling the court that the process was based on the pattern followed by the ICSE Board while admitting its students to ISC schools, which is Plus 2 of the ICSE board, the bench demanded a thorough explanation.

The direction came after Salve made a statement before the court on the assurance given to him by a board representative.

Even as two other senior advocates P.P. Rao and T.R. Andhiarjuna claimed that the state board’s practice was to benefit the ICSE students, the court remained unimpressed.

Earlier, while opening the arguments in the case, Salve criticised the Bombay High Court judgment that struck down the government’s Best-Five formula for the state board students.

He argued that the board was entitled to frame rules for regulating its students to junior colleges.

“We have the statutory power. I don’t question their (ICSE) board. I can't make a rule for ICSE or the CBSE," Salve told the court.

He said the state’s decision to amend the rule was not discriminatory.

“As there is no uniformity in the education system, this discrepancy is bound to be there,” he said.

Urging the court to hear the case on Tuesday Salve added: “There is a lot of heartburn among the students in the state. We must dispose it of quickly.”