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Supreme Court final year exams Decision Updates
May 08 2024

Supreme Court Final Year Exams Decision: No degrees without exam, Supreme Court upholds UGC's position

Supreme court final year exams decision final judgment on UGC Exam Guidelines and final year university exams 2020 has been announced. While the apex court has allowed the states to cancel the examinations under the Disaster Management Act, it's upheld that the ultimate year university examinations are mandatory. States cannot promote students without an examination, the court has ruled. Join our CAT online course here

New Updates on SC Final Year Exams Decision

Speaking on the SC verdict on the UGC Guidelines, experts and states from the industry have called it the proper decision.

Maharashtra Government Update on Final Year Exams in the state

Mumbai: "A six-member committee headed by an administrator of Mumbai University Dr. Suhas Pednekar has also been formed to offer recommendations about the way to conduct examinations", said Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. Chief Minister has also asked his ministry to conduct examinations with utmost precaution and in a simplified manner, Mr. Samant added... Maharashtra Higher and Technical Education Minister Uday Samant on Saturday said that a choice about modalities of final year examinations are going to be announced on Monday.

On Friday, the Supreme Court held that students of the final year can't be promoted without holding examinations."We will announce our first decision on Monday about how we are getting to conduct examinations of scholars in the final year of graduation and post-graduation courses," Mr. Samant told reporters. "Students' safety is paramount and decisions would be taken without compromising on safety," he said.

The Shiv Sena-led Maharashtra Government was against holding examinations on the bottom of the coronavirus situation. But the state will respect the Supreme Court's decision, Samant had said on Friday. He also appealed that misleading reports about examination schedules shouldn't be spread, and therefore the government will announce dates at the proper time.

West Bengal may hold final year exams before Durga Puja: CM

Chief Minister of West Bengal Mamata Banerjee informed on August 28 that her government was weighing options to carry the ultimate year college and university exams before Durga Puja in October 2020. Vice-Chancellors of varied state universities have said that they're going to await advisories from West Bengal education department before going ahead with any decision to hold final semester college and university exams by October before the Durga Puja Courses offered by IIMs - MBA, PGP, EPG, PGP-FABM, PDGHRM, PGPPM, etc.

Education Minister welcomes SC's decision to conduct final year exams

Union Minister of Education Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' said that politics must be kept far away from education and welcomed the Supreme Court's decision to uphold UGC guidelines on conducting final year exams for university students. "I heartily welcome the choice taken by the Supreme Court with reference to the ultimate year exams. Let's keep politics far away from education and educate our politics," he said

We respect the decision on Final year exams: Yuva Sena

The Yuva Sena said it respects the Supreme Court's decision regarding holding the ultimate year university examinations and said that it had approached the apex court for the health and well-being of scholars. "The SC has reiterated that it's up to the respective state governments to make a decision on when and the way to carry examinations, not at the insistence of the September 30 deadline of the UGC," said Yuva Sena Secretary Varun Sardesai.

Ms. Neeti Sharma, Senior VP of Team Lease 

She said, "The supreme court verdict mandating final examinations may be a positive move because it will make sure that lakhs of scholars don’t miss out a year. Given the present pandemic situation, it's good that SC has allowed flexibility to conduct exams, and therefore the ideal way forward would be to optimally use online platforms for conducting examinations and virtual meetings for vivas. a serious task here for colleges would be to enable both educators and students to quickly and seamlessly transition to those digital platforms.”

SC Final Decision on UGC Case - Verdict Explained

  • Prayer for quashing the UGC revised guidelines of July 6, 2020, and office memorandum of July 6, 2020, is REFUSED
  • Decisions taken by State Disaster Management authorities under the Disaster Management Act shall prevail over the UGC guidelines as regards the deadline of September 30, 2020, for conducting the ultimate exams.
  • Decision taken by state disaster management authorities to market the ultimate year students on the idea of previous semester/ year results and internal assessments is beyond the jurisdiction/ powers under the DM Act and has got to subside to the UGC guidelines.
  • Final semester/ year students can't be promoted without the ultimate exams.
  • Any state/ Union Territory cannot hold the ultimate semester/ year exam, they mist write to UGC to push the deadline of September 30, 2020, and apply for an extension, which shall be considered by the UGC expeditiously.
There were multiple petitions within the Supreme Court. While one petition asked for UGC Guidelines to be quashed, the petition filed by the Yuva Sena Chief Aditya Thackeray challenged the UGC's decision to conduct the examination while the Maharashtra government had ordered the exams to be canceled.
Supreme Court has announced that the states, under the DM Act, have precedence over UGC. In simple words, States can cancel the examinations, hence Maharashtra University Exams are often canceled. On the matter, however, to grant the degrees without conducting final year examinations, the apex court has denied the request, stating that degrees can't be granted without the examinations.
Hence, while the government can cancel the examination, it cannot plan to promote the scholars without the examinations. The state governments can, however, reach out to UGC to increase the deadline of September 30, if things aren't conducive to conducting the examination. 

UGC Case in Supreme Court: Key points

  • Petitioners argued that the ultimate year examinations should be canceled because the situation isn't conducive.
  • 4 states had replied to the petitions, stating that they might not allow the examinations to be conducted because the coronavirus cases within the state were increasing rapidly
  • UGC had contested that the States don't have the authority to cancel the examination.
  • As degrees are granted by UGC, it had argued that as per the statute, UGC is well within its right to order the examinations. As for the Disaster Management Act, the counsel argued that the Central Government takes precedence over the government.
  • UGC had further stated that while the states can invite the examinations to be postponed, however, no degrees are often awarded without conducting any examination.
11 students from across the country had approached the Supreme Court for intervention in the matter. Following that, 2 separate petitions – one by Yuva Sena on behalf of Maharashtra State’s decision to cancel exams and another by a student were also filed. The matter was heard within the court over multiple hearings. Final submissions are made and therefore the decision is now awaited.
Rahul Singh

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