Published: 10th August 2020
SC to hear pleas against UGC exam guidelines on August 14: No exam, no degree, says Tushar Mehta
The UGC, on July 6, had released its set of guidelines which said that universities will have to complete their final examinations by September 30
The Supreme Court of India has pushed the hearing on the case against the UGC's directives for colleges to conduct exams during the COVID-19 pandemic. The court will next hear the petitions challenging the UGC guidelines, on August 14. The body had previously asked all the universities to conduct their final examinations before September 30, even as the COVID-19 pandemic raged on.
After July 31, the court today heard four petitions, filed by Maharashtra Minister Aditya Thackeray, a student Yash Dubey, another student Krushna Waghmare and 31 other students, represented by Alakh Alok Srivastava. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who represents the UGC, in his opening argument, criticised the decisions of Delhi and Maharashtra governments that cancelled the examinations. Previously, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia had asked all state universities to cancel examinations. Maharashtra, on the other hand, resorted to promoting all students.
This became a point of contention. "The affidavit filed by Delhi and Maharashtra governments are contrary to UGC Guidelines, as UGC is the one who confers degrees. How can states cancel exams when UGC is empowered to confer degrees?" Tushar Mehta asked. Mehta added that students must continue preparing for their examinations. "If exams aren't conducted, students can't get a degree. That's the law," he said.
In today's hearing, many of the main counsels were not unmuted, creating difficulties. This matter was raised by Senior advocate Dr Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who was representing Yash Dubey.