Will Students get the Justice they Deserve?
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the decision of cancelling exams by the Delhi and Maharashtra State Governments was not welcomed by the University Grants Commission (UGC).
In this Students vs UGC war, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta who represented the UGC in the Supreme Court on August 10 was quoted saying, “Students have to continue preparing for exams. If exams are not conducted, students will not be granted a degree. That is the law!”
A bunch of pleas was made to the Supreme Court by the college students from Karnataka, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Meghalaya and other states challenging the UGC’s earlier circular released on July 6 which directed universities to conduct final year examinations by the end of September.
Advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, who represented the students in the Supreme Court questioned the legality and constitutional validity of the July 6 circular.
According to Yash Dubey, a student in Bhopal currently in his final year of law studies has argued that the revised UGC guidelines violate the fundamental rights granted to students under Article 14 (Right to Equality) and Article 21 (Right to Life and Personal Liberty) of the Constitution of India. He further added that the UGC guidelines completely disregards the health and safety of the students.
The apex court has asked SG Mehta to make clear if the Disaster Management Act under which the Delhi and Maharashtra governments have filed affidavits and have declared to cancel the final year examinations, can override the notification released by the UGC and file responses to the same.
The next hearing in the Supreme Court has been adjourned to August 14, which will decide the fate of lakhs of college students who are still unclear about their future.
When unemployment and mental health issues are on a sky-high amongst students, will the Supreme Court be able to serve justice to the Youth of India?