The Allahabad High Court has referred to the Government of India a PIL to cancel the examination of remaining papers of classes X and XII scheduled by the Central Board of Secondary Education and the Council for Indian School Certificate Examination, in the backdrop of the increasing cases of COVID-19.
It has been contended on behalf of the petitioner that considering the present situation which has occasioned because of increasing rate of infection as also deaths caused by COVID-19, it would not be appropriate to allow large gatherings which may occur during the examination as the students are more vulnerable to the disease. Various other concerns have also been raised in the writ petition, which require consideration by an appropriate authority, noted the Court.
"We are of the opinion that the issues raised in the said writ
petition will require consideration by the experts in the field and other related areas, hence, we find it appropriate to refer this entire writ petition to the Ministry of Home, Government of India", said the Division Bench.
The Court stated that this writ petition will be treated as a representation and the competent authority shall take appropriate decision in the matter. "We expect that while taking any decision under this order, the concerned department of Ministry of Home shall be guided by the utmost consideration of public interest", it observed.
Noting that the examinations are scheduled to commence from 1st July, 2020, the bench expressed that an appropriate decision under this order shall be taken by appropriate authority in the Government of India before commencement of the examination. The Court required the ASG to communicate this order forthwith to the authority concerned in the Ministry of Home, Government of India.
The petitioner before the High Court has prayed that the class 10 and 12 students be promoted based on the marks obtained in the examination of subjects that they have already taken and on the internal assessment marks. It has been urged that the HRD guidelines for the safe conduct of the exams are not sufficient to ensure the protection of the students, as they do not stipulate who would be responsible in the event a student becomes infected.
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