Days after Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced that all final-year degree students would be passed on the basis of marks obtained in previous semesters, the state’s Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Tuesday, 2 June, said that all such decisions shall be taken by the Chancellor of Universities in accordance with provisions of the Maharashtra Public Universities Act.
Saying that the chief minister had taken the ‘unprecedented’ decision ‘without any profound thinking on the legal repercussions’, the governor said that the move could jeopardise the future of students.
Koshyari claimed that he was not presented a copy of the report penned by the committee of vice-chancellors on exploring ways to conduct examinations, even after it was submitted to the secretary of the Higher and Technical Education department on 6 May.
The governor said during a video conference with the committee of vice-chancellors, he was given the impression that the respective universities are prepared to conduct examinations. The governor asserted he had made it clear that a decision on the committees’ recommendations would be made by the chancellor after the report is submitted before his office.
"“The arbitrary decision has violated the basic principle that to obtain an identical degree, there cannot be two sets of criteria, one who has taken examination and for the other who has obtained marks on average. The examinations cannot be made optional.”" - Bhagat Singh Koshyari, Maharashtra Governor
Future of Students in Jeopardy: Governor
Further, the governor added that those studying medicine, law, and other subjects often have to register themselves with professional bodies in order to begin practice. These bodies, the governor felt, may not be able to register these students and provide them with a licence to practise, those in their final year are not evaluated on required parameters.
The governor also asked that if the CBSE and ICSE boards could conduct examinations, why could the universities not conduct their examinations as well.
He also reminded the government of an advisory issued by the University Grants Commission, which said that universities may conduct final-year exams in July while exploring different options.
The same has been repeatedly stressed upon by the Union Human Resource Development Minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal, who in a recent webinar said that “exams for final-year students would definitely be conducted.”
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