By Sushil Batra
New Delhi [India], July 4 (ANI): A civil writ petition in the nature of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been moved in Delhi High Court seeking direction to the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and others to refund the examination fees to the students registered in classes X and XII for appearing in Board examinations that have been cancelled for this year.
The petition submits that the Respondent is totally unjustified in keeping the money collected from students as examination fees for Class X and XII board examinations that have got cancelled. It is safe to assume that CBSE has received Crores of rupees as examination fees, plea states.
The petitioner Deepa Joseph, an advocate and a social activist also the mother of a Class X student studying in a CBSE affiliated government school in Delhi has knocked on the doors of Delhi High Court.
The plea seeks direction to CBSE and Union Ministry of Education to consider formulating a fresh examination refund policy wherein refund of fees will be granted when unforeseen circumstances like pandemic and subsequent cancellation of exams.
Petition filed through Advocate Robin Raju stated that the petitioner had paid a sum of Rs 2,100 as examination fee for appearing in Class X Board examinations to the CBSE for 7 subjects. But due to the pandemic, the Board exams for Class X got cancelled on April 14, 2021 and the results of the exam are still not declared. The Class XII boards were also cancelled on June 1, 2021, considering the COVID-19 situation across the country.
It is also imperative to note that the said examination fees are levied from parents by CBSE for paying the invigilators and examiners or is spent on setting up exam centres. In short, the fees charged as examination fees is for covering all kinds of expenses related to the conduct of exams.
The contention of the petitioner herein is that since the board exams are cancelled, the CBSE and Centre should refund the money collected as an examination fee as it will not have to incur the aforementioned expenses, plea states.
The demand for a refund of examination fees was also raised by the All India Parents Association recently. The news regarding the demand raised by the Association to the respondent was also published in media on June 7, 2021. The published news covers stories of people who belong to poor backgrounds and for whom the amount collected as examination fee by the Respondent is significant, especially in these difficult financial times. (ANI)