CBSE Class XII exams to be scrapped? Decision likely on Wednesday, Centre, CBSE tell SC

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Updated: Jun 23, 2020 6:07 PM

The plea said that in April this year, the CBSE had directed the schools to promote students of classes IX and XI to the respective next grades on the basis of school based assessments.

Cbse, cbse 12 exam, cbse 12 exam date, cbse 12 exam new date, cbse board, cbse class 12 exams news, latest news on cbse examsDuring the hearing, Mehta requested the bench to adjourn the matter for a day and said he would apprise the apex court about the decision taken by the authorities regarding CBSE exams.

The Centre and the CBSE informed the Supreme Court Tuesday that an expert body is in the process of taking the final decision “very shortly”, hopefully by Wednesday, on whether to scrap the remaining exams of Class XII scheduled from July 1-15 in view of increasing number of COVID-19 cases.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told a bench headed by Justice A M Khanwilkar that the government and the board are aware of the anxiety of students, and the authorities concerned will take a decision on the issue very soon.

The apex court, which also heard through video-conferencing a separate petition regarding the exams to be conducted by council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (ICSE) amid the pandemic, posted the matter for hearing on June 25 noting that the Centre is likely to take an “informed decision” with regard to the CBSE exams.

Besides this, the top court was hearing a plea seeking quashing of the May 18 notification of Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) by which the date sheet for remaining exams of Class XII was declared.

“Solicitor General has informed us that the expert body is in the process of taking final decision in the matter very shortly and hopefully by tomorrow i.e. June 24. In the circumstances, we defer the hearing of these matter(s) to June 25 at 2 PM,” said the bench, also comprising Justices Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna, in its order passed on plea regarding CBSE examinations.

During the hearing, Mehta requested the bench to adjourn the matter for a day and said he would apprise the apex court about the decision taken by the authorities regarding CBSE exams.

The top court was hearing a plea, filed by some parents of students appearing for the exam, seeking a direction to the CBSE to declare the results on the basis of exam already conducted and to calculate it on an average basis with internal assessment marks of remaining subjects.

During the hearing on a separate plea concerning ICSE exams, the counsel appearing for the ICSE told the bench that they would broadly follow the government’s decision regarding CBSE exams.

“At the request of Jaideep Gupta, senior counsel, appearing for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (ISCE), we defer the hearing of this matter to June 25 at 2 PM. Also, because the Government of India is likely to take an informed decision with regard to the Central Board of Secondary Examination (CBSE),” the bench noted in its order.

The Bombay High Court had yesterday asked Maharashtra government to clear its stand on permitting ICSE board to conduct its pending examinations of classes 10 and 12 in July amid the concern over rising number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the state.

On June 17, the CBSE had told the apex court that it would “very shortly” take appropriate decision on the issue raised in a plea which has sought quashing of the board’s notification for conducting remaining examinations of Class XII.

Raising concern over the safety of lakhs of students, the plea filed in the apex court has said that they might be exposed to COVID-19 infection if they have to appear in the examinations amid increase in number of cases of virus infection.

“The said petition would also demonstrate the extent of discriminatory and arbitrariness conduct of the respondent/CBSE in issuing the notification for holding of the remaining examination and that too in the month of July, 2020 wherein as per the AIIMS data, the said COVID-19 pandemic would be at its peak,” the plea said.

It alleged that considering the gravity of COVID-19 pandemic, the CBSE has cancelled the examinations of Class X and XII for its around 250 schools which are situated abroad and has adopted the criteria of awarding marks on the basis of either practical exams conducted or the internal assessment marks.

The plea said that in April this year, the CBSE had directed the schools to promote students of classes IX and XI to the respective next grades on the basis of school based assessments.

It also said that on May 25, the Ministry of Human Resource and Development had announced conducting of exams for classes X and XII in almost 15,000 centres as against 3,000 centres used earlier.

It said even if it is to be assumed that 50 per cent of coronavirus cases are asymptomatic then the students, who will appear in the exams, could be potential carriers posing a great risk to themselves and also their family members.

The plea said that several premier educational institutes, like Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), have also cancelled their exams including those for the final year students because of the pandemic situation.

It has also raised concern over the issue where an examination centre might fall within the COVID-19 containment zone.

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