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Can ICSE & CBSE Students Have Separate Syllabus For Junior College CET Examination?: Bombay High Court Asks State

Sharmeen Hakim
23 July 2021 10:04 AM GMT
Can ICSE & CBSE Students Have Separate Syllabus For Junior College CET Examination?: Bombay High Court Asks State
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The Bombay High Court on Thursday asked the Maharashtra government if there can be a separate syllabus for CBSE and ICSE students appearing in the Common Entrance Test (CET) for class 11 junior college admissions. In the alternate, the court sought to know if students who appear for the CET would not be given priority over other students if there isn't a separate syllabus. A...

The Bombay High Court on Thursday asked the Maharashtra government if there can be a separate syllabus for CBSE and ICSE students appearing in the Common Entrance Test (CET) for class 11 junior college admissions.

In the alternate, the court sought to know if students who appear for the CET would not be given priority over other students if there isn't a separate syllabus.

A division bench of Justices RD Dhanuka and RI Chaglawas was hearing the plea of ICSE Board student, seeking to quash the May 28, 2021 state government notification on the CET. The notification lays down an alternate evaluation criteria owing to the cancellation of class X board exams amid pandemic.

The notification says admissions to class XI for 2020-21 – also known as junior college in Maharashtra – will be based on internal evaluation and an optional CET. The CET in turn, will be based entirely on the syllabus of the SSC board. Those unwilling to appear for the CET would be admitted based on an aggregate of their Class X marks.

The petitioner's father, Advocate Yogesh Patki, argued that the CET syllabus was notified on June 24, informing students that the test will be held next month and nearly 16 lakh SSC students and 4 lakh ICSE or CBSE students were supposed to give the test offline.

Patki alleged that his daughter, like several other ICSE and CBSE students, had not opted for science in the past two years and therefore wouldn't want to give the CET. However, first preference might be given to those students who appeared for the CET, thereby prejudicing his daughter's interests.

He added that even if his daughter were to secure 92% marks, she might have to go to a college in one of the nearby districts of Thane, Kalyan or Dombivli because she did not give the CET.

In view of this, Patki, pending hearing, sought to stay the May 28 notification.

For the State, Government Pleader Purnima Kantharia submitted that they had already started registering students for CET since July 21, and they propose accepting registration applications only until July 26. She further informed the court that the CET is likely to be held on August 21.

"In view of the statement made by the Government Pleader and in view of the fact that the matter is proposed to be heard on the suggestion given by this Court on 28th July, 2021, no interim reliefs are warranted at this stage," the bench noted in its order.

It directed Katharia to seek instructions if there could be a separate syllabus for the respondent CBSE and ICSE boards so that it is easier for the children to prepare.

The bench allowed petitioner Patki to implead CBSE and ICSE to file an affidavit in reply within one week and stated that the petition would be taken up next on July 28.

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