SC asks CBSE to decide within a week on Board exam schedule

IANS
Wednesday, 17 June 2020

A group of parents, whose children have to appear in Class 12 Board examination, had moved the apex court challenging the CBSE decision to conduct the remaining Board examination from July 1 to July 15.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked the CBSE to consider the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic situation and decide by next week on the schedule of Board examination.

A group of parents, whose children have to appear in Class 12 Board examination, had moved the apex court challenging the CBSE decision to conduct the remaining Board examination from July 1 to July 15. The parents claimed if students were to appear for the examination, amid the ongoing coronavirus, then their health safety would be compromised.

A bench comprising Justices A.M. Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjeev Khanna directed the CBSE to consider the situation and revert by next week. The petitioners sought scrapping of the remaining exams, saying marks could be allotted based on internal assessment.

Criticizing the CBSE decision on the schedule of the examination, the petitioners argued that it demonstrated the extent of a discriminatory and arbitrary conduct of the CBSE in issuing the notification for holding the remaining examination and that too in July, wherein as per the AIIMS data, the COVID-19 pandemic would be at its peak.

The petitioners urged the apex court to direct CBSE to declare the results on the basis of examination already conducted and to calculate it on an average basis with the internal assessment marks of the remaining subject, and also stay the decision to commence the examination from July 1.

The petition said that on May 25, the Ministry of Human Resource and Development announced the exams for Class X and XII students in almost 15,000 exam centres as against 3,000 centres which were used earlier.

"Ensuring proper cleanliness and safety standards as prescribed by the government concerned in COVID-19 situation in those 15,000 exam centres spreading over length and breadth of the country, including rural sectors, would not only be risking health and life of children but also would be an exercise in futility", said the petition.

"Moreover, even if it is to be assumed that 50% of the cases are asymptomatic then, the students appearing for these exams could also be potential carriers themselves, posing a great risk to the other family members and themselves", contended the petitioners.

The petitioners said it is also not practically possible for every parent to afford a private vehicle to send their wards to appear in the examination at different examination centres and that by hiring a public transport, the risk of infection would be the highest.

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