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Telangana High Court refuses to intervene in State's policy

Telangana High Court refuses to intervene in State’s policy
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Telangana High Court refuses to intervene in State’s policy 

Highlights

The High Court on Tuesday made it clear that “the court could not be justified to interfere in the policy decision of the State”. After all, the petitioners have not pointed out any illegality in the process of taking in the said decision of UG / PG final year examinations, the court opined.

Hyderabad: The High Court on Tuesday made it clear that "the court could not be justified to interfere in the policy decision of the State". After all, the petitioners have not pointed out any illegality in the process of taking in the said decision of UG / PG final year examinations, the court opined.

The High Court division bench headed by Chief Justice Raghavendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Bollam Vijaysen Reddy heard two public interest litigations seeking to hold the postgraduate / undergraduate final year examination in online mode, due to pandemic and escalation of Covid-19 cases in the State.

Counsel for the petitioner C Damodar Reddy submitted that the Commissioner of Collegiate and Technical Education must inform the Court how soon the supplementary examinations can be held and delay of holding the examinations may adversely affect the career of students.

Advocate General Banda Shivananda Prasad informed the court that it is not possible for the department to decide and to make a commitment to hold the examinations immediately. It is the prerogative of the department to take a policy decision and to decide the date.

Counsel for JNTU Dharmesh DK Jaiswal submitted that JNTU has already made a commitment that it shall hold the advanced supplementary examinations within a period of two months, from the date of announcement of the result of the regular examinations, which are scheduled to begin shortly.

In its letter submitted to the court, JNTUH has given instructions to the principals of its colleges that any student who is unable to attend the examinations due to mobility restriction caused by the corona pandemic, such students can appear for the advanced supplementary exams which shall be scheduled within two months after the regular examination results. It will not be treated as supplementary exams for those students who do not appear for even a single exam.

The High Court observes that since the government has taken a policy decision which seems to be more reasonable, that the autonomous engineering / degree colleges will be given the freedom to decide the exams online or offline mode. And has taken a policy decision to direct all the affiliated engineering / degree colleges to hold physical examinations.

Chief Justice RS Chauhan pointed out that this court cannot sit as a court of appeal over a policy decision in the garb of judicial review under Article 226 of the constitution of India.

As far as holding the supplementary exams is concerned keeping in mind that the academic career of the students is involved, this court can only request the department to ensure that the advanced supplementary examinations are held within a reasonable time after the results of regular examinations had been declared, the Court added.

The CJ bench directed the State government to follow standard operating procedure (SoP) and precautions to be followed where the physical mode of examinations are going to be held.

With these observations, the High Court disposed of two PIL's.

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