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Breaking: SC dismisses CBSE-ICSE Students’ plea seeking hybrid mode for Class X-XII term exams

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date
Breaking: SC dismisses CBSE-ICSE Students’ plea seeking hybrid mode for Class X-XII term exams

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a writ petition filed by CBSE and ICSE students, seeking 10th, 12th exams in hybrid mode today on November 18, 2021. The exams will be held as scheduled, following Covid-19 safety protocols.

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The bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar dismissed the petition observing that the CBSE term exams have already commenced on November 16 and an intervention at this juncture will disturb the process. The bench also noted in the order that the ICSE term exams are commencing from next Monday, November 22.

“…as the exam has commenced on November 16, it will be inappropriate to intervene now and disturb the entire process. At this belated stage, the Writ Petition cannot be entertained. We hope and trust that all the precautions will be taken by the authorities and COVID SOP will be adhered to”, bench noted in the order.

The bench took note of the submissions of the Solicitor General of India Tushar Mehta, who appeared for the CBSE, that adequate arrangements have been adopted to address the concerns of the petitioners regarding COVID. The SG said that the exam centres have been increased to 15,000 from 6500 of last year to ensure more social distancing and less travel time. Now only 12 students will sit in a centre, as opposed to 40 students earlier. Also, the exam time has been reduced from 3 hours to 90 minutes.

Central Board of Secondary Education and Indian Certificate of Secondary Education or CBSE, ICSE Term 1 Board Exams 2022 have started for this academic year and are being held in offline mode. Today, on November 18, 2021, Supreme Court has dismissed a plea filed by students that seeked the conduct of 10th, 12th exams in hybrid mode. With this, the exams will be held as scheduled, following Covid-19 safety protocols. 

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CBSE, ICSE Term 1 Board Exams 2022 matter was being heard by a Bench of Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice CT Ravi Kumar. The Bench observed that this request was at the eleventh hour and hence, it could not be considered now. Both the sides presented their arguments following which this order was passed. 

The Solicitor General, SG while presenting his arguments pointed out that all precautions had been taken for Board exams this time. Moreover, this time,the number of exam centres have been increased and there would be 12 students in one classroom in order to ensure that social distancing is maintained. The petition was earlier scheduled to be heard on November 15, 2021. However, due to some reasons, the Bench adjourned the hearing to today. It said that they would hear the matter with another case today.  

The petition has been filed by a group of 6 students challenging the decision of CBSE and CISCE to hold 10th, 12th Board exams in offline mode. It specifically seeked the quashing of two circulars from both the boards. These are – CBSE’s circular dated October 14, 2021 and CISCE’s circular dated October 22, 2021. Both these notices have schedule for Term 1 exams and say that they will be held offline.  

CBSE, ICSE Term 1 Board Exams 2022 have already started and are being held in offline mode. Even though the hearing got postponed and students started giving the exams, they were eagerly waiting to know Supreme Court’s decision on this.  

The petitioners alleged that the conduct of Term 1 exams in offline mode isn’t a wise decision and can increase the possibility of spread of COVID-19 infection. They reason their arguments by further mentioning that this age-group is more vulnerable to getting infected as they are not vaccinated. Keep a check here for more updates on Supreme Court hearing today on CBSE, ICSE Term 1 Board Exams 2022.  

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