The Supreme Court verdict on the University Grants Commission (UGC) guidelines to the state universities on conducting final year exams by September end is expected to be out soon. The top court had reserved its order on August 18, 2020 on whether the central commission be allowed to conduct final year exams in state universities across the country. Advocating on conducting final term exams, UGC during one of the hearings in Supreme Court had said that state universities final term exams shouldn't be cancelled as the future of students was at stake.
Supreme Court hearing status on UGC guidelines so far
- The Supreme Court reserved judgement on whether the final year degree examinations in universities should be held before September 30, in accordance with UGC guidelines.
- The top court will also decide whether state governments have the power to take a decision against conducting final year examinations under the Disaster Management Act.
- A bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan has reserved the judgement on a batch of PILs along with some state governments - Maharashtra, West Bengal, Odisha and Delhi - questioning the UGC direction to universities to conduct final year exams before September 30.
- The state governments have argued that they have the power to promote students without exams in the backdrop of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
- Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the UGC, contended before the top court that final year is the degree year and exams cannot be done away with.
- Mehta cited examples of exams being conducted by some universities and added that many top-level universities have opted for online exams. Mehta insisted that foreign universities and further education require degrees.
- Citing the UGC guidelines, Mehta contended before the bench that these guidelines are not merely for preaching and that they are mandatory.
- The guidelines which have been challenged before the top court have a statutory mandate, Solicitor General added.