The Centre on Tuesday informed the Supreme Court that a decision on whether or not to hold this year’s Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) exams would be taken by tomorrow evening.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Union Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) and CBSE, told the Court that the decision-making process was in an advanced stage. He said, “By tomorrow evening, a formal decision will be finalised. We understand the anxiety of the students. We can inform the Court day after tomorrow.”
Accepting the submission, the Court deferred the hearing to June 25. A three-judge bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna heard the matter. The Court also granted the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) liberty to follow the decision taken by the CBSE, with necessary changes. The Bench was hearing a plea seeking cancellation of this year’s CBSE exams, filed by the parents of students scheduled to appear for their Class XII Board exams in July.
The petitioners highlight that according to data by AIIMS, the COVID-19 pandemic would be at its peak in India during this time. In this light, it would be a huge risk to hold Board exams even though the number of exam centres stands increased and the authorities have assured that proper safety will be maintained, the plea states.
The petition filed through Advocate Rishi Malhotra highlighted the various practical difficulties that will be posed should the exams be conducted as scheduled. These include difficulties that a student from containment zones will face in order to leave the area to attend the exam centre and unavailability of private vehicles for all students to reach their exam centres, the plea adds.