Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari, on Friday, asked Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to resolve the issue of conducting the final year examination of university students in the state ‘without any further delay in the larger interest of students’. “Not conducting the final year examinations by the universities amounts to breach of the UGC guidelines,” he wrote in a letter to the CM. The tiff between the governor and the Maha Vikas Aghadi government looks quite imminent with the former's move.
The governor took a strong objection to the letter written by the Minister of Higher and Technical Education Uday Samant on May 17 to the UGC recommending the cancellation of final year examination of students. He asked the CM to issue suitable instructions to the minister for his ‘unwarranted intervention’, which according to him was in violation of the UGC guidelines and also the relevant provisions of the Maharashtra Public Universities Act, 2016.
The governor has stated that he was not apprised by the minister in the matter before recommending the cancellation of final year examination to the UGC. The governor’s move comes close on the heels of Thackeray skipping the meeting convened by him two days ago to review the COVID-19 crisis. Further, he has dashed off a letter to the CM after he had received a representation from the student wing affiliated to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
The governor noted that, as per provisions of the relevant Universities Act, universities have the power and duties to hold examinations and confer degrees upon successful students. He noted that it would not be ‘ethical or appropriate’ to award degrees to final year students without conducting their examinations, which results in violation of the provisions of the Universities Act.
He observed that receiving degrees by students without undertaking any kind of examinations would have an adverse impact on their higher studies, gradation and employability.
He also pointed out that the Ministry of Home Affairs has granted exemption from lockdown measures to the State Education Boards / CBSE / ICSE to conduct Standard X and XII examinations. He further noted that the UGC has also issued guidelines on lockdown measures covering important dimensions related to examinations and academic calendar for adoption by the universities.