It has demanded that state governments be empowered to take their own decision on whether to hold exams or not.
Stating that the issue touches the life of every student in the country, where the Covid-19 pandemic has affected 10 lakh people, the petition asks for local-level decision-making by the states after assessing the spread of the pandemic and the logistical possibility of holding the exams.
Aditya Thackeray, the Yuva Sena chief, took to Twitter to say the petition was a humble prayer to save the lives of lakhs of students, teachers, non-teaching staff and their families by asking the UGC not to be stubborn. He called the UGC judgement of the situation “absolutely bizarre” and criticised it for not being flexible. He said students could voluntarily appear for exams in a post-Covid world if they still felt the need to do so.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) in its latest guidelines had set September 30 as the new deadline to conduct exams. Professional apex bodies like the Architecture Council of India and the Bar Council of India have refused to grant a practising licence to students who are graduated without exams. Letters by the CM and higher education minister to these bodies and UGC stating their inability to hold exams have not met with a response.
Last week, the tussle between vice-chancellors and the higher education minister on the issue saw the varsity administrators write to the governor, who is the chancellor of all universities in the state, to ask him to step in.
Varun Sardesai, secretary, Yuva Sena, in a video released on Saturday said letters to the UGC and the ministry of human resource development had evinced no response. “Maharashtra government has already cancelled the final year examinations and we want that decision to be taken for the entire country,” Desai said.