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Plea against UGC final year exam decision: SC adjourns hearing to August 18

The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned the hearing, of the plea against UGC order to hold final year exams, to August 18. The top court was hearing a plea filed by students against the UGC order to conduct final year exams by September 30

Updated: Aug 14, 2020 13:48:47

By Abraham Thomas| Edited by Nandini, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

A view of the Indian Supreme Court, in New Delhi (Hindustan Times)

The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned the hearing, of the plea against UGC order to hold final year exams, to August 18. The top court was hearing a plea filed by students against the UGC order to conduct final year exams by September 30

A bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, Subhash Reddy and MR Shah started the hearing at 10.30am. The hearing went on till 1 pm.

Senior advocate Shyam Divan arguing for petitioners told the Court that students constitute a homogenous class and health of final year students is equally important as other students of other year batches. “You cannot have a one-size-fits all approach as students are facing serious problems of transportation, communication, and most colleges in Maharashtra are used as quarantine facilities,” he said.

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi also appearing for another petitioner argued that colleges across India cannot be expected to have same facilities. Many colleges have not held classes.



Delhi and Maharashtra took a considered view to cancel exams after consulting VCs of their state universities who said many students were digitally handicapped.

Singhvi said that prior notifications of UGC issued in April 15, May 1 and June 29 realized the pandemic situation and gave flexibility to universities to either conduct or not conduct exams. Now when pandemic is at its peak, how can UGC decide to hold mandatory exams when teaching has not been held.

Advocate Shyam Divan argued that National Disaster Management act will have overriding effect over UGC act and these are just guidelines. Section 72 of the Act states that provisions of NDMA will override all Acts. “Today due to pandemic, NDMA is in place and this is a special law that will dominate over states and any breach under this act by states can attract penal consequences,” he added.

Earlier on Thursday, the home ministry filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court saying that it has given relaxations to colleges and universities across the country and allowed them to open for the conduct of final-year examinations, which will be held in accordance with an order issued by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

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