Published on: April 1, 2022 at 16:36 IST
The Supreme Court asked the Centre on Wednesday to reconsider its stance and respond in two weeks on offering an extra opportunity to students who failed to appear in the Civil Services (mains), 2021 Examination, which was held earlier this year, because they tested positive for Covid-19.
The ruling came after the Court was told that, due to the difficulty caused by the Covid epidemic, a Legislative standing Committee had proposed to the Government on March 24 an additional try as a General Norm for all Civil Service Candidates.
Referring to the 112th report of the Standing Committee on personnel and training, the Bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar, AS Oka, and CT Ravikumar stated, “In light of the recommendation of the Parliamentary committee, we dispose of this Petition with a direction to the appropriate Authority to re-examine the Petitioners’ request and take appropriate decision within two weeks.”
The ruling was issued in response to a Plea made by three Civil Service Aspirants who had developed coronavirus and were unable to take the Mains Test, which was held from January 7 to 16.
The Centre’s Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) required them to isolate and not attend the examination, but the Centre and the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) rejected their request for an additional chance, fearing similar requests from other categories of students and in other Central Examinations.
According to the Commission, “Covid-19 has brought unfathomable misery and insurmountable sorrows to many. The entire country had come to a halt, lives and livelihoods had been disturbed, and the student community had also suffered.”
However, the Court stated that its decision should not be Interpreted as a Statement of Opinion on what conclusion the authorities must reach.