Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to intervene and direct the UGC (university grants commission) and Human Resources Ministry to cancel final year exams for students of both Delhi University and other central universities across the country in light of the COVID-19 crisis.
Mr Kejriwal, who has written to the Prime Minister, said: "For the sake of our youth, I urge the honourable Prime Minister to personally intervene and cancel final year exams of DU and other central government universities and save the future".
In his letter the Chief Minister urged the centre and the UGC to amend guidelines in the larger interest of students and save their futures by cancelling last semester examinations.
"If institutes like IIT and NLU have already awarded degrees to their students on the basis of internal assessment, then why can't other universities do the same?" the Chief Minister asked.
"Global universities have also awarded degrees on basis of internal assessment in the time of pandemic" he pointed out.
For the sake of our youth, I urge Hon'ble PM to personally intervene and cancel final year exams of DU and other central govt universities and save the future. pic.twitter.com/V7iinytR9O— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) July 11, 2020
Hours before his appeal, Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said final exams for all state universities were cancelled.
"Since no studies took place this semester. It was not possible to hold exams. So we have asked universities to cancel exams and promote students on basis of past results or progressive method of evaluation," Mr Sisodia, who is also Delhi's education minister, was quoted by news agency PTI.
Universities under the Delhi government include the Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi Technological University, Ambedkar University and the Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women.
Central universities in Delhi include the Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi University and Jamia Millia Islamia.
Central approval is needed to cancel exams in these institutions.
The conduct of final year exams during the coronavirus outbreak has been a contentious one, with several opposition leaders, like Congress's Rahul Gandhi, against holding them this year.
The UGC has issued revised guidelines and it has been suggested the exams may be held and completed by September, either in classrooms or online.
Concerns over final year exams come amid a worrying spike in COVID-19 cases across the country; more than 8.2 lakh cases have been detected so far, with more than 20,000 fresh cases every day since July 3.
Delhi is the third worst-affected region in the country, with nearly 1.10 lakh cases and 3,300 deaths.
With input from PTI