Bombay HC refuses to interfere in Mumbai University's decision to conduct exams

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Saturday refused to intervene in the Mumbai University's decision to conduct final year examination for its undergraduate courses from October 1.

A bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice G S Kulkarni directed two university students who had petitioned the court seeking a stay on the examinations, to instead approach the vice-chancellor for any relief that they sought.

Following the Supreme Court's order that final year students can only be promoted based on examinations, the Mumbai University issued a circular announcing the schedule for the third-year final semester examinations.

The exams will be conducted virtually between October 1 and October 17.

The university's counsel Rui Rodrigues told the bench on Saturday that the examinations will be conducted online in a multiple-choice question (MCQ) format.

The petitioners, however, argued through their counsel Sharon Patole that the University had announced the exam schedule in haste.

Patole informed the bench that the MCQ format was new, and students and teachers should have been given some training to get accustomed to it.

The petitioners also said the schedule was in breach of the University's own circular from June this year, whereby it had said that colleges must announce exam schedules at least a month in advance.

However, Rodrigues argued that the university had decided on holding online exams in view of the COVID-19 pandemic and that it had made all arrangements to conduct them smoothly.

The bench then said it could not pass any orders staying the exams.

"You can withdraw this petition and approach the VC for relief," it said, suggesting that the students concentrate on preparing well for their exams.

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Free Press Journal