SC to hear plea seeking direction to CBSE to maintain original results on December 6

The plea has been filed by 11 students who were declared passed in the original results by the CBSE
Supreme Court of India | Pic: Wikimedia Commons
Supreme Court of India | Pic: Wikimedia Commons

The Supreme Court on Monday, November 22, said that it will hear, on December 6, a plea filed by some students who had appeared in the CBSE improvement examinations this year, seeking a direction to the Board to maintain their original results. The plea has been filed by 11 students who were declared passed in the original results by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on the basis of the evaluation policy of 30:30:40 and were subsequently allowed to appear in the improvement exams held in August-September this year.

The plea said that the petitioners had been either declared failed or were awarded very less marks in the improvement examinations and they apprehend that their original results, in which they were declared pass, would be cancelled.

When the matter came up for hearing before a Bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar, the counsel appearing for the CBSE said that he has received a copy of the plea on Sunday, November 21, and would need some time to seek instructions. The Bench posted the matter for hearing on December 6.

The plea, filed through advocate Ravi Prakash, referred to a clause of the CBSE's evaluation policy of June 17 that states that students who are not satisfied with the assessment, done based on the policy, will be given an opportunity to appear in examinations to be conducted by the Board when conditions are conducive for holding the examinations. As per the clause, the marks scored in the later exams will be considered final.

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Claiming that this clause is contradictory to the CBSE's own other circulars, the plea refers to a March 16 circular which says that “better of the two marks obtained in the subject will be considered for final declaration of marks” and “candidates who will improve their performance will be issued combined mark sheet”. It said that there is no specific bylaw that says that the original mark sheet will become invalid or be cancelled for students appearing in improvement examination.

The plea said the purpose and objective of providing an opportunity to appear in the offline examination was to give an opportunity to improve marks and not to put the students at a disadvantage or to declare those who were already declared pass as fail.

“The inaction of the respondent (CBSE) is tantamount to taking away the fundamental rights of innocent students under Article 21 of the Constitution, that is, right to life which includes right to livelihood and Article 21A of the Constitution which is based upon higher education. Hence, the action of the official respondent is unconstitutional, illegal and arbitrary in the present set of facts and circumstances as violative of Articles 21, 21A and 14 of the Constitution,” the plea said. As per a press statement of the CBSE, 34,317 regular students had appeared in the offline examinations for the purpose of improvement of their marks.

On June 17, the top court had approved the assessment schemes of the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) and the CBSE, which had adopted the 30:30:40 formula for evaluation of marks for students of 12th standard, based on results of Class X, XI and XII respectively. The apex court had approved the assessment schemes of the CISCE and the CBSE and had said that it should incorporate the provision for dispute resolution in case students want correction of the final result.

The CBSE had earlier said it would evaluate Class XII students for theory based on 30 per cent marks from Class X Board, 30 per cent from Class XI and 40 per cent from marks based on the performance in the unit, mid-term, and pre-Board tests in Class XII. It had said that marks obtained by Class XII students in practical and internal assessment on an actual basis as uploaded by schools on the CBSE Portal would be also considered in deciding final results.

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