Almost all varsities have accepted government decision to cancel arrear exams, Madras High Court told

Option of supplementary examinations too were given, says State government

The State government on Thursday told the Madras High Court that the Syndicates of almost all universities in the State had accepted a decision taken by it on August 26, 2020, to cancel arrear exams for a large contingent of college students due to the COVID-19 threat.

The universities had also declared ‘all pass’ by awarding marks based on current internal assessment and previous semester external marks. Evaluations were done accordingly, and the results were also declared in October 2020.

An affidavit filed before the first Division Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy on behalf of the Higher Education Secretary stated that Anna University, the Tamil Nadu Teachers’ Education University and the Board of Technical Education alone had not adopted the Government Order (G.O.) issued on August 26.

The rest of the universities in the State followed the process enunciated under the G.O. for award of marks and issued the marksheets too. However, the students were given the option of improving their marks by appearing in the supplementary examinations to be conducted online. Those supplementary examinations were conducted by different universities on different dates beginning from October 12, 2020.

While some of the universities had completed the conduct of such examinations, the exams in a few others were under way. One of them, Alagappa University, had scheduled the examinations in April, the government said. The affidavit submitted in court by E. Manoharan, Special Government Pleader (Higher Education), also stated that 1,09,518 students of University of Madras benefited from the G.O. and that 60,793 of them had chosen to take the supplementary exams conducted between December 21, 2020 and February 26, 2021. Similarly, 18,086 out of 40,675 students had opted to take the examinations being conducted by Bharathidasan University in Tiruchi since February 24 this year.

As far as Manonmaniam Sundaranar University in Tirunelveli was concerned, 28,336 out of 50,969 beneficiaries had chosen to take the supplementary examinations, for improving their marks, between December 14 and January 10. Alagappa University had scheduled the examinations only in April, the SGP said and urged the court to grant four more weeks’ time to file a final report after all the universities completed the conduct of the supplementary examinations.

However, since the Bench could not take up the case for a detailed hearing on Thursday due to paucity of time, it was adjourned to next week.

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