A seven-member committee set up by the University Grants Commission (UGC) has deliberated that the new academic session is to experience a two-month delay, with a beginning in September instead of July, 2020.
As per the report submitted by the UGC committee on Friday, 24th April 2020, the Covid-19 lockdown has officially caused the academic session of 2020-21 to stand delayed, as reported by a government committee. This government committee has also recommended that the beginning of the session be postponed to September, instead of mid-July, as is traditionally.
This decision was taken by a seven member committee set up by the University Grants Commission (UGC), curated you deliberate on the examination and academic related issues that have arisen due to the world’s current situation. The panel was headed by Haryana Central University’s vice-chancellor R C Kuhad. Additionally, A C Pandey, director of Inter-University Accelerator Centre; Aditya Shastri, vice-chancellor of Banasthali Vidyapeeth; and Raj Kumar, head of Panjab University, are among its other members.
As the pandemic hit the globe and the Covid-19 lockdown was instated throughout the country, universities and colleges have been under lockdown since 16th March 2020. This was done in lieu of the order given by the Union government, announcing a countrywide lockdown in order to prevent the spread of the Coronavirus disease.
The UGC committee has also proposed the re-scheduling of the universities’ end of the semester examinations. The examinations, which were to be held in May, have been proposed to be rescheduled for July. The UGC is set to frame the guidelines regarding examinations based on the report submitted by the committee. A source, under the condition of anonymity, told the Indian Express that, “The guidelines will not be binding on higher education institutions, but they will lay down the outer time limit by which the government expects them to start their new academic year.”
The decision to hold examinations, however, has been widely criticised by students and teachers across the country. Delhi University Teacher’s Association (DUTA) has urged the faculty to reject their varsity’s attempts to gather information for aiding the examination process, insisting that scheduling exams by taking only online classes into consideration, is discrimination against students with lesser means and lack of the availability of resources.
“The online classes aren’t enough. There’s either problems with connectivity, or a lack of extra reading material. You definitely can’t hope that online lectures would be able to suffice for class lectures. Many of us didn’t even take all of our textbooks back home because the Holi break was so short, and the lockdown news came with no warning. Plus, a lot of students don’t have a peaceful environment to attend these lectures either. I think it’s insensitive of DU to even consider examinations unless they plan to somehow compensate for the classes that we haven’t gotten to attend,” Pragya, a 2nd Year student from IPCW, told DU Beat.
As of now, all colleges and other educational institutions remain at an indefinite hiatus.
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