The University of Delhi on Tuesday filed an appeal against Delhi High Court's verdict on Open Book Examinations. The High Court, vide a judgement dated August 7, had allowed the university to proceed with its online OBE for final year undergraduate students, which started from August 10.
Advocate Akash Sinha, who is the counsel for the petitioners in Anupam & ors vs University of Delhi, told India TV that they have received the advance copy of the appeal but will not able to share it as it is not in public domain as yet. According to Sinha, the varsity has filed a Letter Patent Appeal (LPA) but it has not been admitted by the court.
"If Delhi University is undertaking such an appeal then it clearly shows that students are mere puppets. After 2 days of commencement of exams if the guidelines change so drastically it will not only harm our mental health but the future also. Delhi High Court's verdict gave some relief to us by extending the time limit and providing email submission of the answer sheet. But on the part of DU, this action is highly condemnable. This appeal should not be accepted," said Saloni Bajaj, Final-Year MA Philosophy student.
"Once everything is cleared it will be listed before a bench. Once the matter goes before the bench, then we will oppose the LPA. Unless and Until a superior bench order a stay against the order of Judge Pratibha Singh it's business as usual for the students," said the counsel.
Sinha also told India TV that their first priority is the welfare of the students and that they will make sure that an extra time of one hour and email facilities given to the students are not taken away.
"I have full faith in the court that these two facilities will not be taken away from the students. Everyone now knows that students are facing difficulties in finishing the paper. As far as these two are concerned, the students shouldn't worry much. Anyway, we are going to oppose this LPA very seriously and it's very likely that it could get dismissed," Sinha said.
The order was passed by a Single Judge Bench of Justice Prathiba M Singh in a petition preferred by students against online OBE. The Court had directed Delhi University and UGC to comply with the directions passed in the order.
The court's directions to Delhi University include the following:
- Question paper to be uploaded on portal and sent to students' email ID.
- Regular students shall be given the complete three hours for answering the question papers. Students to be given extra hour for uploading the answer sheet.
- Students under PWD category are given one more hour for downloading the question paper, completing their answers and uploading the answer sheets i.e., a total of six hours.
- Students can scan the answer sheets page by page or question wise and upload the same on the DU portal within the 7MB limit or convert their answer sheets into PDF files either question wise or in entirety and e-mail the same to the central email address and/or to the respective college/department/faculty email.
- Auto generated email to be sent confirming receipt of the answer sheet.
- Details of Nodal officer, Central Email ID to be published.
- Common Service Centre to notify all its centres by the end of the day.
- There shall be grievance officer to address the issues raised by the students. In case of a non-redressal, complaint to be forwarded to the Grievance Committee.
- Grievance Committee reconstituted under the aegis of Justice (retd) Pratibha Rani.
- Grievance Committee to function till OBE continues, complaints to be addressed within 5 days.
- The uploaded answer sheets of students shall be simultaneously sent for evaluation to the respective teachers/faculty to ensure that declaration of results is not delayed in any manner.
- OBE results ought to be announced in a short period.