HC declines to interfere with open book exams for final year DU students

Offline physical exams, for those students who could not participate in the examinations commencing from July 1

The Delhi High Court has said it would not interfere with Delhi University (DU)’s decision to hold open book online exams for final year students but asked the varsity, UGC, and the Centre to work out a solution to also enable disabled students to take the examinations.

The court said it was not going to interfere with DU’s decision as it has also decided to hold offline physical exams, once the present COVID-19 situation improves, for those students who could not participate in the examinations commencing from July 1.

A bench of Justices Rajiv Sahai Endlaw and Asha Menon gave the varsity, University Grants Commission (UGC), and the Centre time till June 11 to work out a solution after meeting representatives of students with various disabilities, including visual impairment, and listed the matter for hearing on June 12.

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It also said that meanwhile, all the students should prepare for the open book examinations, scheduled to commence from July 1, and not assume that it would be delayed due to these proceedings.

The court, in its order passed on June 9, said it was only looking to iron out problems faced by persons with disabilities in participating in the exams and added that their difficulties would be addressed by the time the examinations commence.

The bench also asked the Centre, UGC, and DU to consider having another set of question papers ready to hold exams immediately after the open book examinations for those who could not sit for it.

The order came on a plea moved by the National Federation of the Blind challenging the Du’s decision to hold open book examinations on the ground that it violated rights of students with visual impairments and other disabilities. The Federation wanted DU to assess the performance of the disabled students of the final year on the basis of their performance in the previous semester and internal assessment.

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In the alternative, it suggested holding offline exams for such students after colleges reopen.