In Supreme Court, ICAI says exams, for now, postponed to November
Took into consideration public interest and students’ health due to big spike in COVID-19 cases, it states.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) informed the Supreme Court on Monday its decision to cancel exams scheduled in July and August, taking into consideration public interest and the health of the students due to the huge spike in COVID-19 cases.
Appearing before a Bench led by Justice A.M. Khanwilkar, senior advocate Ramji Srinivasan, for the ICAI, said the situation was “too dynamic” as regards the health crisis to safely hold the exams.
The ICAI said the exams, for now, had been postponed to November 2020. Mr. Srinivasan said the candidates had been intimated about the change of plans to avoid causing them any anxiety.
In the previous hearing, the ICAI had indicated “operational problems” in conducting the exams due to the spread of infection.
The hearing was based on a writ petition filed by the India Wide Parents Association, represented by advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava, which primarily challenged the ICAI's ‘opt-out’ scheme.
On June 29, the court asked the ICAI to come ready with a fresh draft notification allowing students to opt out of the exams without running the risk of being marked as having failed in the papers they missed due to the pandemic.
However, on July 2, the ICAI was having second thoughts about the exam with the pandemic situation worsening, especially in Maharashtra. When told of this, the court allowed it some more time to review the situation and come back on July 13.
The logistics of the July-August exams included 500 examination centres. A total of 3.46 lakh students were supposed to take the exams between July 29 and August 16. Of this, 2.89 lakh had opted in while 52,000 had opted out.