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CM: Hold final-year exams ensuring no one gets infected

By HT Correspondent, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON MAY 31, 2020 12:00 AM IST

Chief minister (CM) Uddhav Thackeray said on Saturday that final-year university exams should be conducted while ensuring not a single student is infected of Covid-19. However, the dates of the examination have not been decided yet. Thackeray also directed the vice-chancellors and officials to explore other options including an alternative where students opt for grades based on the previous semester’s performance or take the examination. A legal opinion will be sought in this matter.

“University examinations should be held ensuring not a single student gets infected by coronavirus. The worries of students and parents should be ended by determining the exact method of examination and by finalising the timetable,” Thackeray said, as per the statement from the chief minister’s office (CMO).

The decision was taken in the meeting between the CM, higher and technical education minister Uday Samant and vice-chancellors of all state universities on Saturday via video-conferencing.“It was also discussed whether students should be given an option to choose if they wish to give the final-year exam or they want to opt for grades based on the earlier semesters’ performance. A legal opinion will be sought on it,” a Mantralaya official said.

The vice-chancellors and Samant are divided over the issue after the minister wrote to the University Grants Commission (UGC) seeking to cancel final-year exam. Following which, Maharashtra governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari wrote to the CM objecting to the move and directed him to resolve the issue.

There are around eight lakh final-year students in the state, and 1.5 lakh are from University of Mumbai (MU).

The final-year examination had become a flashpoint between the state government and the Governor. Koshyari had asked Thackeray to issue suitable instructions as not conducting final-year exams would be in violation of UGC guidelines and the provisions of the Maharashtra Public Universities Act, 2016. Shiv Sena’s youth wing, Yuva Sena, headed by Aaditya Thackeray, had demanded that exams should be cancelled while BJP-backed Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) was pressing the Governor to hold the exams.

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