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Students who petitioned the SC against UGC guidelines asks PM to cancel exams

August 18, 2020

Students who are fighting a case against the UGC to get the final year exams cancelled, have now written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi hoping for some respite. The Supreme Court of India will decide the fate of the students and take a call on the new UGC guidelines on the conduct of the examinations, the student petitioners speak up about their ‘long, suspenseful, gut-wrenching, agonising wait.’

Also read: Centre permits UGC to conduct university exams; next SC hearing on August 18

The letter to the PM read, “Is this the price we have to pay for being the very own children of this country? How fair is this to us?” they ask in a letter that they’ve jointly written to the Prime Minister of India, asking him to cancel all examinations in the pandemic time. “One cannot baselessly vouch for a student’s safety during an offline exam in the midst of an unforeseen health crisis nor for his unrestricted access to the Internet at a time when his city/town/village has been devastated by floods. There is an urgent need for a uniform decision across all states and union territories of the country, as state autonomy will do no good for more than half of the student population due to many states’ unfeasible and rigid inclination to conduct examinations.”

The students who say that they are ‘hanging on this last thread of hope for life and equality” also question, “Is the UGC oblivious to the ground reality being faced on a daily basis by such students? If they aren’t, then shouldn’t they be displaying the least amount of empathy in the name of humanity? Does being final year students completely strip us off of our fundamental rights to life and equality?”

The letter further read, “We have posed these challenges as queries to the UGC in every hearing, yet haven’t yet been given a valid, practical and logical solution for it. For how long do we have to wait? This pandemic has wreaked enough havoc on all of our lives already and there seems to be no definite end to it anytime soon. Is it truly justified to put us through more trouble during such vulnerability? Do we have to fight additional battles when we have enough already to weigh us down during such testing times?”

It added, “Another point worth a mention is the system of evaluation followed by most professional and degree programs in India. Students are given 25-50% of their final grades of a given semester via continuous and comprehensive internal evaluations in the form of paper-pen tests, projects, assignments, dissertations, presentations and so on. Why is it that intermediate year students can be evaluated and promoted on the basis of these scores while final year students cannot, when in fact both sets of students have to put in the same amount of effort to achieve good scores in these assessments?”

Source: Edex Live

Read: UGC hearing in SC: Students must continue to prepare for exams, says SG

Also read: UGC asks colleges to develop online courses; doubles credit limit

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