Published: 27th July 2020
Delhi High Court raps Delhi University over inadequate prep for conducting online exams
The matter will be next heard on July 31. The decision to conduct these examinations drew a lot of criticism from various circles
The Delhi High Court, on Monday, issued a notice to Delhi University while hearing a plea on its decision to conduct online Open Book Examinations for final year students. Even though the decision was critcised by various student and teacher organisations, the university had gone ahead with its decision to conduct it in August. However, the examination's dates were postponed twice.
The plea was heard by a single bench with Justice Pratibha Singh. The university had informed the court that the students can upload their answers in the JPEG format. However, this was refuted by the Intervenors, saying that this may distort the image quality. The university also said that it is using a common cloud for conducting the online exams across the country and that it will constitute a committee of at least five professors to look into the glitches faced by the students, after the examinations. It added that it wants the examinations to go smoothly.
While the university informed the court that a team of 4 persons will be handling the entire process of conducting online exams, the judge commented that it is a big responsibility to run such a huge exercise with four persons.
While the issue of digital divide was raised, the university said that students with no access to technology can appear for the examinations from CSC centres across the country. While the court asked the university's counsel if it had submitted a list of students to these centres, DUvs counsel responded that the students are to approach CSC centres themselves. The petitioner, on the other hand, said that 12,000 CSCs are not even operational.
The court said, "DU should've asked the students at the stage of filling up of exam forms as to whether they'll be requiring services of CSC for taking the exams." It also asked the university, "How do you expect them to keep lakhs of centres open at 7.30 am ?"
The petitioners also raised their concerns over the university using Amazon Web Services to conduct the examinations. The matter will be next heard on July 31.